Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Mexican Black Bean Dip/Hummus

Recently I soaked and cooked a 16 once bag of dry black beans. So this week I've been making a lot of black bean recipes. Beans are so usable in so many ways, and I'm finding no shortage of ways to incorporate them into my recipes. Beans are perfect for a vegetarian diet because they supplement the protein. Dried beans are also incredibly affordable. I get these dry beans for $1 per 1 lb dry bag, and once they are cooked it yields about 6 cups of black beans. Canned black beans are also rather cheap, but dry beans blow them out of the water in terms of affordability. I'll write more on my love affair with beans in a future post. 

This black bean dip is perfect for chips or raw vegetables. This is often a weeknight dinner for me since its quick and easy (and I don't need much for dinner because I eat all day long). You can also use this as a spread in a wrap or sandwich. I have this with bread, fried eggs, and veggies for an easy hearty breakfast, lunch, or dinner. 

This recipe has classic Mexican ingredients, such as lemon/lime, fresh cilantro, jalapeno, chili and cumin. The amounts in this recipe create a mild spice and flavor. For a stronger flavor add more spices, lemon juice and  cilantro, OR simply reduce the amount of the base ingredient... blacks beans. 

Here are the ingredients...

2 cups of cooked or canned black beans
1/4 cup olive oil
1 lemon or lime (the zest and juice
1/8 onion
2 garlic cloves
2 slices jalapeno (or more for added spice)
1 Tbls. cumin
1 Tsp chili powder
a small bunch of fresh cilantro
salt and pepper

1. Chop the onion and crush the garlic. I used the mixer/food processor to chop the onions to make it easier on my eyes. 

2. Saute the onion for a minute or so, letting it soften and brown. 

3. Add the garlic, jalapeno slices, cumin and chili to the onion. Add a splash more of oil to keep it all together. 

4. Saute for another minute or so. Cooking these ingredients together like this really maximizes all of their unique flavors. 

5. Put the black beans in your food processer, blender or chopper. Add the sautee mixture, the olive oil, and the lemon juice and zest. I have a chopper here, its easier to use for thick consistencies like a dip than a blender is. Food processors are very expensive, but a little chopper like this can handle this kind of a job. 

6. Blend everything. I blend for a good minute or 2 to for good measure. Add the cilantro leaves and blend for another 20 seconds or so. I add this last because I don't want over blended cilantro in my dip. 

 7. Sprinkle some salt and pepper over the top and enjoy with chips, veggies, or however you like. 


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