Did You Know? The "pocket" in pita bread is made by steam. The steam puffs up the dough and, as the bread cools and flattens, a pocket is left in the middle.
This dip has become my signature recipe at neighborhood get-togethers. It's always expected to be put out before our main course with some homemade pita chips, and the leftovers (which I usually have to set aside) are always requested by my friend Ali. It's smooth and creamy, fruity from the olive oil, and really filling. The cannellini beans are rich in protein and fiber, and the oil provides a good dose of heart-healthy fats. The fresh parsley provides a nice pop of green, and the garlic gives it a nice bite along with a good amount of disease-fighting compounds and manganese.
This dip is excellent as is, but it also lends itself to a handful of variations. I love it with plump sun-dried tomatoes and basil, with roasted red and jalapeno peppers, with caramelized onions, the list goes on. I'd love to hear some other suggestions you may have, or maybe a favorite dip that you serve. I'm always looking for new recipes to break out at parties. Until then, here's the original...
1 (15-oz) can Cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
2 cloves garlic
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup fresh parsley
1/4 cup Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper
Puree all ingredients in a food processor. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy with homemade pita chips, as a sandwich spread, or with raw veggies.
6 Whole wheat pitas
Olive oil cooking spray
Herbes de Provence
Salt and Pepper
Preheat oven to 400.
Split the pita rounds all the way along the outer seam, so that you have a total of 12 circles. Cut each round into 8 wedges, like you would a pizza.
Lightly spray a few baking sheets with cooking spray, and arrange pita wedges on the trays (do not overlap). Spray the wedges, and sprinkle with herbs, salt, and pepper.
Bake in the preheated oven for about 10-15 minutes, flipping halfway through, until golden and crunchy. Enjoy warm or cooled with the white bean dip.