“The Big Game” has come and gone, the football season is by most definitions over, and many, many avocado pits and skins now lie in trash cans, the only reminders that Super Bowl Sunday is the biggest day of the year for guacamole. The end of the football season, however, should not mean forgetting about dips, in particular healthy ones that shouldn’t only be brought out to eat on any given autumn Sunday. More often than not, a bean-centric dip will make an appearance on a random Tuesday or Wednesday night around here, often paired with Alton Brown’s sardine sandwiches and a bunch of celery sticks, creating a lovely meat-light spread that satisfies without any guilty feelings of over-indulgence.
This was a newish sort of creation on Saturday–I was in the mood for something to snack on in the afternoon before any thoughts of dinner were in our head, and I wanted something other than our normal chickpea spread, so I suggested to Michael that we make something with white beans. Using an old recipe from Everyday Italian and making many adjustments based on what we had (in the end only keeping the white beans, garlic and olive oil), Michael whipped up a delightful, garlicky dip that (gasp!) even included leafy greens. Toasting some pitas to accompany it, it took a monumental amount of self-control to not devour the entire blender jar on the spot. Only the promise of a delicious dinner could keep us in check…but that will be a tale for another day.
White Bean and Arugula Dip
heavily adapted from Everyday Italian
Serves 6 as an appetizer
- 1 29 oz can of white (cannellini) beans, well-drained
- 2-3 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1/4 cup baby arugula, washed, drained and dried
- Juice of a lemon
- Up to 1 teaspoon of fresh oregano, finely minced
- Olive oil
- Kosher salt and pepper
Combine arugula, beans, garlic, and oregano into a food processor or a blender and process until they are combined, but before the mixture is perfectly smooth. Add lemon juice and some salt, and drizzle in about a quarter to a third of a cup of olive oil, with constantly checking to make sure the mixture is blending evenly. Just before the dip is at the consistency desired, add some more salt and freshly ground pepper and process until perfectly smooth.