Recipe: Creamy Avocado and Date Dip/Spread

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Serves 2-4 as a dip 4-6 as a sandwich spread This dip/spread is a happy blend of sweet and creamy. In Cape Verde, they call this a salad and serve it with shrimp or prawn nestled on top. Personally, I like it spread on a hot turkey panini. If you want to add a kick of flavor, splash in a capful of brandy. (We omitted this step so that Ava could sample the dish). According to Duffy in Cape Verde: "Cape Verdeans put sugar on [avocados], and not just a little bit of sugar but so much sugar … [Read more...]

Recipe: Roasted Eggplant & Bell Pepper Dip (Kyopolou)

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Serves 4-6 Kyopolou melds roasted, sweet peppers, eggplant, and ripe tomatoes to make a dipping sensation. Serve with pita bread or alongside white fish. Be sure to prepare a day ahead (or at least several hours) so that the flavors can properly distribute. Otherwise the garlic will be too sharp and bitter. If you simply must serve this dish right away, use less garlic. Ingredients: 3 eggplants 4 red bell peppers 3 tomatoes (I used roma) 2-5 cloves garlic fresh parsley, … [Read more...]

Recipe: Ema Datshi (Chili Cheese Stew/Curry)

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Serves 2-4 Ema Datshi is considered the national dish of Bhutan and it's traditionally screaming hot! Use whatever chili peppers you like, from mild poblano, to scorching thai bird chilies. My blend of Anaheim and Serrano chilies is very hot, but you can reduce the heat by leaving out the seeds. In Bhutan they serve Ema Datshi over rice (pictured here with cracked red rice). My husband likes dipping corn chips into the cheesy goodness. I'd like to tell you he's a fool but, really, the … [Read more...]

Recipe: Roasted Eggplant Dip (Uukkous Al-Badinjan)

Smooth and spicy Eggplant Dip

Serves 4 Make this dish a day ahead to allow time for the flavors to mingle. Uukkous Al-Badinjan blows baba ganoush out of the water! Ingredients: 3 eggplants 4 cloves garlic, crushed 2 Tbsp olive oil 1/4 tsp cayenne 1 1/2 tsp sweet paprika 2 Tbsp lemon juice 1/4 cup fresh parsley, minced 1/2 - 1 tsp salt Method: 1. Using a fork, poke eggplants all over. Roast eggplants at 350F for about 1 hour or until soft. NOTE: Today it's pretty hot in Oklahoma, so I decided … [Read more...]

Recipe: Cucumber and Yogurt Dip (Jajik)

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Serves 6 Serve this refreshing dip with toasted pita chips. You'll be cool as a cucumber even on a hot day. Ingredients: 2 cups greek yogurt 2-3 garlic cloves, crushed 2 medium cucumbers, peeled, grated, and squeezed dry with paper towels (see photo at bottom of recipe). 2 Tbsp chopped fresh mint 1 tsp dried cilantro 2 Tbsp olive oil 1/2 tsp salt 1/4 tsp ground sumac for garnish (optional) Method: 1. Combine all ingredients in a serving bowl, except for sumac. Cover … [Read more...]

Recipe: Sabse Borani (Spinach Yogurt Dip)

Sabse Borani

Serves 4-6 Both tangy and sweet, Sabse Borani is no ordinary spinach dip. The carmelized onion is this recipe's secret to success. Ingredients: 1 cup frozen, chopped spinach 1 medium onion, thinly sliced 2 cloves garlic, crushed 2 Tbsp vegetable oil 1 cup drained yogurt Method: 1. Drain yogurt over a small bowl for 1 hour. Use either a coffee filter in a large colander or a fine strainer by itself. 2. Heat oil in a medium skillet. Saute the onion until golden, … [Read more...]