Friday, January 22, 2010

Sun Dried Tomato Pesto Dip

Sun Dried tomatoes are a staple in my kitchen. I do a lot with them. They are delicious, savory, easy to work with, and have great color… all the things I love when I cook.

For my kids and hubby, I make bread for them with olive oil packed chopped sun dried tomatoes in the bread. It gives a flavorful punch of yum in their midday sandwich bread, plus a little shot of lycopene, so beneficial for heart health. I buy them dried (dry packed) and soaked in Olive Oil.

If you have a little mini food processor, this can be whipped up in small batches and popped in the fridge… but we love it so much, I make big batches and add it to soups, breads, as a pizza spread or as a dip for red peppers, celery, and jicama.

Here’s the recipe for a good sized batch…

2 cups either reconstituted dried tomatoes, or oil packed tomatoes

1 cup cooked or canned/drained/rinsed white beans (use any color you like, I only use white to show the lovely color of the tomatoes, it’s a chef thing)

1/2 cup fresh parsley (or basil, or watercress, or whatever herb you enjoy!)

Olive Oil (to drizzle in the food processor while it’s going to make the dip the consistency you want)

Salt to taste (taste the dip before adding salt, the cheese is plenty salty most of the time)

pepper to taste

1 clove fresh garlic

4 oz grated Romano or Parmigiana cheese (Romano is what I use…it’s a Sheep’s milk cheese, and I have used it since day of eating this way… I will never give it up)

1 tsp lemon juice


Place all of this into a food processor and whiz away until it’s the consistency you like. I like ours a little on the chunky side, but not too chunky. The next time I make it, I’ll try to snatch it out of my kids hands to get a quick picture, so the wolves don’t attack me for taking their dip away…


You can puree this and squirt it out of a pastry bag onto boats of endive, or on celery halves, for your next bunco or card game, and feed your family and friends healthy, yummy food, instead of chips and dips that will surely send them to an early grave. (yeah, I know… sooo dramatic I am)

Normally, pesto recipes have pine nuts in them, but I wanted to take the fat out and have it be even more nutritious, so the beans give it body and a creamy like texture, plus… they add a ton of fiber and minerals.

I hope you enjoy this recipe… and tweak it to suit your tastes…

Mangia Bene

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