Words by Ellie Krieger, The Washington Post
The average black bean dip is a reliably good snack option. Full of plant protein and savoury spices, it is healthfully satisfying but rarely memorable. However, this is not your average black bean dip.
While the accompanying recipe still qualifies as healthful, it is full of flavour and appeal. A key difference is that this dip is served warm, which immediately puts it in the comfort-food zone, and it is rustically presented in the skillet with an eye-catching cover of melted Monterey Jack cheese.
The flavour is ratcheted up with the smoky spice of a chipotle chile in adobo, as well as earthy cumin and coriander. (A little chipotle goes a long way, so I recommend dividing up what’s left in the can into small, sealable plastic bags and freezing for future use.) Half the beans are pureed with sautéed onion and garlic, the chile and spices and a bright punch of lime-juice until smooth, then that creamy base is returned to the skillet with whole beans and cilantro for added texture and flecks of colour.
Served with contrastingly cool, crunchy vegetables and/or tortilla chips, it’s like a magnet as an appetiser at a party, but it also makes for a playful and nutritious meal in larger portions. Either way, it’s a dish you’ll be thinking dreamily about way after the last bite has been scooped up.
Warm Chipotle Black Bean Dip
6 servings (makes 1 1/2 cups)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 medium onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon ground coriander
One 15 ounce can no-salt-added black beans, drained and rinsed
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lime-juice (from 2 limes)
1 canned chipotle in adobo, seeded and minced, plus 2 teaspoons of the adobo
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh cilantro leaves, plus more leaves for garnish
1/3 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese (1 1/2 ounces)
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a small, ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for about 3 minutes, until softened. Stir in the garlic, cumin and coriander; cook for 30 seconds more, then remove from the heat to cool slightly.
Combine half the beans, the water, lime juice, chipotle pepper and its sauce, salt, the onion mixture and the remaining tablespoon of oil in a food processor; puree until smooth.
Wipe out the skillet you used to cook the onion, then transfer the bean mixture to the pan. Stir in the remaining beans and the chopped cilantro. Top with the cheese and place in the oven until the cheese is melted, about 15 minutes.
Garnish with the cilantro leaves, and let the dip rest for 5 minutes before serving.
MAKE AHEAD: The dip may be assembled in the skillet and refrigerated up to 2 days before baking; add a few extra minutes of oven time if you are baking from chilled.
Nutrition | Per serving: 130 calories, 6 g protein, 11 g carbohydrates, 7 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 5 mg cholesterol, 240 mg sodium, 4 g dietary fibre, 0 g sugar
Featured Image: Goran Kosanovic The Washington Post.