Tag Archives: dill

Hot Artichoke and White Bean Dip

Many years ago, a restaurant here in town served an appetizer called Sheep Dip.  I know, not the most appetizing name, but oh my what a delicious combination of hot, gooey deliciousness.  It had tons of cheese and spinach and artichokes.  Yum, yum, yummy!  We ordered it EVERY time we went there.  I have since given up dairy, so no more Sheep Dip for me.  Not that I don’t think about it sometimes.  And THEN!  I treated myself to a new cookbook for the holidays: Vegan Holiday Kitchen.  A beautiful book full of complete menus for every occasion, including a section on appetizers.  One of those recipes looked very, very much like my beloved Sheep Dip.  I just had to try it!  I’m sharing it with you because YES!  Very reminiscent of the original hot gooey deliciousness!

transfer to baking dish top w cheese

Serve it in a bread bowl, serve it in the baking dish, serve it with bread or crackers or crudites….perfect for a party, perfect for just you and your sweetie…or just you!

ingredients

  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 15-oz can white beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup vegan cream cheese
  • 1 14-oz can artichoke hearts, drained
  • 1 cup baby spinach leaves (or arugula or watercress)
  • 2 TBSP fresh dill
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella-style grated vegan cheese
  • paprika for topping

Preheat oven to 375F.

Saute onion and garlic in a bit of veggie or No-Chicken broth until the onion starts to caramelize.

saute onions garlic

Place the saute in a food processor along with the beans and cream cheese, process until smooth.

process sauted onions garlic beans cream cheese

Add artichoke hearts, spinach, dill, thyme, salt and pepper.

pulse spinach artichokes and seasonings

Pulse until evenly chopped, but not pureed.

just until evenly chopped

Place in a oven-safe dish, top with grated cheese and bake for 25-30 minutes.

transfer to baking dish top w cheese

Sprinkle top with paprika and serve hot or warm.

Have you noticed I don’t have a picture of the final gooey yuminess?  My guests were already here when I pulled it from the oven.  I was so amazed with it, I sprinkled the paprika, set it on my kitchen island with a flourish and completely forgot to take a picture!  It was delish.  Go make some and see for yourself!

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Filed under appetizer, dairy-free, Food memories, Holiday foods, recipe, vegan, Vegetarian

Lizette’s Dilly Beans

Late August and September are when my garden is most productive.  Tomatoes, squash, peppers, and LOTS of beans.  They need picked twice a week!  Definitely more than I can keep up with, so what to do?  Make my friend Lizette’s Hot and Spicy Dilly Beans, of course! Just as easy as regular cucumber-based dill pickles, but even more yummy.  

let cool and label

Head out to the garden or farmer’s market and grab some dill, garlic, jalapenos and green beans.  Mine are purple, an heirloom variety called Royal Burgundy.  They turn green when cooked, unfortunately.  Although, these pickles retained some of the purple color in the brine!  I’ll give you the brine proportions (make more as needed) and what you’ll put into each jar.  It’s easy to adjust as you go.

ingredients

  • 5 cups vinegar
  • 5 cups water
  • 1/2 cup pickling salt
  • peeled whole garlic cloves
  • fresh heads of dill
  • jalapeno peppers
  • fresh green beans

Sterilize jars, rings and lids; make your best guess at how many you’ll need.  I try to over-estimate so I don’t have to stop mid-process to get more ready.

Get your brine going (vinegar, water and pickling salt) at the same time you start water boiling in your canner.

prepare brine and canner

Wash and snap the stem ends off the beans.

snap beans

Peel garlic and wash and cut jalapenos in half length-wise.  Remove seeds and veins if you want your beans less spicy.

cut jalapenos

Place a head of dill and a clove or two of garlic at the bottom of the jar.

dill and garlic on jar

Fill the rest with beans, and then squeeze in a jalapeno half.

beans and jalapeno in jar

Add boiling brine, leaving 1/2 inch head space.  Use a knife to help any air bubbles come to the surface, and add more brine to keep the 1/2 inch head space if needed.

add brine

Wipe the rim and adjust the lid.  Process 10 minutes in boiling water. 

process

Remove jars and let cool.  Label each jar with the date.   If any refused to seal, re-water bath them, or keep them in the fridge.

let cool and label

Let your Dilly Beans sit for a day or two for full crispy-spicy-dilly yumminess.  Save a jar for midwinter and enjoy the taste of summer.  Perfect for your holiday relish trays!

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Filed under Canning and preserving, food gifts, Garden produce, Holiday foods, recipe, side dish, snack, Vegetarian

Dreaming of Warmer Days Salad

Today was my monthly “lunch with the retired ladies” and I was bringing the salad.  (By the way….we three retired ladies are former teachers.  We all taught together at one time in the same middle school before moving on to other schools and eventually retirement.)  Dreaming of warmer days ahead, I selected a salad my friend Louise made for DH and I when we were visiting.  It has all the flavors I associate with springtime in a fresh combination.  This salad is a great side dish, and could be a lunch all on its own.  Besides that, it’s really pretty!  : )

Here are the ingredients for the Dreaming of Warmer Days Spinach and Berries Salad: 

For the Red Wine Vinaigrette:

1/2 cup olive oil

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

1/4 cup sugar

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

1/4 dry mustard

1/4 tsp onion powder

For the Salad:

1 cup slivered almonds

1 pound baby spinach leaves

1 pound other greens    (I used a head of leaf lettuce)

1 bunch green onions, chopped

1/2 pint fresh strawberries, sliced

1/2 pint fresh raspberries

1/2 pint fresh blueberries

1/4 cup chopped fresh dill weed

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, and place almonds on a baking sheet.

Toast in the oven for 5-7 minutes, stirring half way through, until golden brown.  Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.

While you wait for the almonds to toast, make the vinaigrette.  Whisk together the olive oil, red wine vinegar, sugar, crushed garlic, salt, pepper, dry mustard, and onion powder in a bowl that you can whisk in without splashing.  I used a 4-cup measuring cup.  Keep whisking until the ingredients emulsify–come together as a dressing.  Set aside.

In a large salad bowl, combine the lettuce, spinach, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, green onions, dill and almonds.  Toss, attempting to keep the berries, almonds and onions mixed into the greens–they will try to sink to the bottom.

Wait to dress the salad until you’re ready to serve it–just enough to coat the greens, or pass the dressing and allow people to add their own dressing.  Enjoy!

I originally thought the dill was pretty, but was a bit unsure if I’d like it with the berries.  Dill and berries, with the vinaigrette is a super-yummy flavor combination!  Who knew?!  Trust me, try it with the dill, even if your inner-yummy meter is going, “Uh, I don’t know about that….”  Really.  The dill MAKES this salad. 

Berries are already on sale in the groceries.  Pick some up next time you’re there and treat yourself to an early (and yummy!) spring by making this salad.

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Filed under lunch, recipe, salad