BBQ season: best dips for roasted veggies

namazi-4Last weekend was the official barbecue season opening at our house. And we had a good reason for it. We were celebrating the release of a new album of a band my dad plays at. Demolition group. I was growing up with the band and their music, but never considered them like big stars. They were more of a  family. I think it was not until I’ve grown up (hope my dad won’t be reading this. lol) that I realised how significant actually is what they are doing.

It was a lovely day, we had great time and we ate well.

Usually there’s a lot of meat when you organise a barbecue. Luckily I was not the only vegetarian and there was abandonce of meat free dishes. As far as I’m concerned, the best concept for a barbecue is to follow the mezze principle, as I call it. Small, fresh, colorful sides that accompany the main thing, so that everyone is satisfied, veggie and meat lovers. I was thinking, what would go best with grilled vegetables and came up with these three easy and delicious dips:

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Greek yoghurt with lemon, mint and black olive paste 

Ingredients:

  • 1 kg greek yoghurt
  • peel of 5 organic lemons
  • 1 – 2 tsp salt
  • mint leaves
  • 80 g black olives
  • 6 Tbsp olive oil

For this recipe you will need a cheesecloth

Preparation:

  1. Drain greek yoghurt: put cheesecloth into a strainer and place over a large bowl into which you will collect excess water from yoghurt. Pour in your greek yoghurt, put into the fridge for at least a day. The longer it drains the firmer it gets.
  2. The next day, mix drained yoghurt with salt and peel of 4 organic lemons.
  3. Mix olives and olive oil and grind into a paste using a mortar or food processor. You can also leave larger pieces of olives.
  4. Put the lemon yoghurt into a larger bowl, garnish with black olive paste. Grate zest of 1 lemon and sprinkle with fresh mint leaves. Sprinkle with olive oil.

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Chickpea, roasted red peppers and walnut dip

Ingredients:

  • 10 -12 long red peppers
  • 1 can chickpea
  • 2 handfuls of walnuts or pecans
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 6 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 – 2 tsp salt
  • garnish: feta, coriander or parsley leaves, olive oil

Preparation:

  1. Oven roast peppers at 200°C until soft and well grilled. You can also barbecue them. Let cool and remove the skins.
  2. Put skinned peppers, drained chickpeas, walnuts or pecans, garlic, lemon juice, ground coriander and salt into a food processor and mix into a smooth paste.
  3. Garnish with crumbled feta, fresh herbs and sprinkle with olive oil.

 

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White bean and almond butter hummus

Ingredients:

  • 1 can white beans
  • 3 big Tbsp almond butter (you can also replace it with 3 handfuls of almonds)
  • 1 small tsp salt
  • 6 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 3 – 4 Tbsp water
  • ½ garlic clove
  • 1 tsp cumin (Cuminum cyminum) – optional
  • garnish: avocado, olive oil, cranberries or pomegranate, sesame

Preparation:

  1. Make almond butter: you will need at least 400 g almonds. Mix them in a food processor or a blender at highest speed until oils get to separate and grounded almonds turn into a smooth butter. You can substitute almond butter by 3 handfuls of almonds, but the consistency will be less smooth.
  2. Put all the ingredients into a food processor and mix into a smooth paste at the highest speed. Add water according to the thickness you prefer.
  3. Garnish with slices of avocado, pieces of cranberries or pomegranate, sesame and sprinkle with olive oil.

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Be good! Enjoy in sunny days!

DG – U tvojim očima

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