beetroot cannellini dip

beetroot, cannellini, basil and sherry vinegar dip

I made a quick batch of this beetroot cannellini dip as part of a nibbly platter for my students last week. I’d been jonesing for these flavours since I had the Marks and Spencer version of this beetroot and bean dip at Christmas. Not only is this dip fabulously purple, it tastes amazing, can be made in less than 5 minutes and is pretty good for you too. Oh and my boys loved it – although only after I convinced them that eating it would turn their wee pink!

We had some leftover from class so I used it along with some crumbled feta and avocado to psychedelic effect as a baked sweet potato topper. The orange, green, white and purple looked brilliant and tasted delicious. I also had it another day with avocado and dukkah on toasted rye bread for breakfast.

For an alternative version, reduce some of the oil and add a cubed avocado before blending the beans, herbs and beetroot.

This is also yummy served alongside fish or roast chicken.

Ingredients (makes enough for 8 people as a dip)

  • 4 golf ball sized cooked beetroot. I buy them, cooked and vacuum packed in the salad area of the supermarket. Don’t buy the ones in vinegar.
  • 1 can of cannellini beans, drained, my can was around 235g or 8oz when drained. Those of you Stateside could use white kidney or Navy beans.
  • 25g (around 3oz) basil, stalks and all
  • 4-5 tablespoons of good extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil
  • 2-4 teaspoons sherry vinegar
  • half a teaspoon garlic infused oil or a quarter of a clove, peeled and chopped
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • To serve – Chopped raw vegetables, bread sticks or wholegrain crackers, crumbled feta, avocado, warmed pitta bread.

To make:

  1. Drain your beans and add them along with the whole beetroot, roughly torn basil leaves and stems and the garlic or garlic oil to the food processor.
  2. Blend until you have a smooth paste then add the oil. I’ll be honest, the more oil you add the creamier and more delicious this is. You could add double of what I’ve stated but I know many people still freak about using too much oil so use what you will allow yourself.
  3. Taste a little then gradually add the salt, pepper and vinegar. Beans can vary in their salt content so taste as you go. The vinegar transforms things so don’t leave it out. Scrape into a bowl or jar and serve.

The dip will keep for 3-5 days in the fridge in an airtight container.


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