Friday, June 18, 2010

Chickpea, Mint and Parsley Spread

I made this in a hurry for a Sunday lunch. I mention that I was in a hurry because that led me to make a mistake in the recipe (I added the olive all at once in the food processor instead of drizzling it with the motor running). The consistency of the spread was affected, but not its taste – and it was absolutely delicious. I mean really, really fantastic. We couldn’t get enough of it. It’s been added to the list of things-we’ll-now-serve-at-parties, and the list of easy-dips-that-can-double-as-side-dishes-and-make-our-day. I urge you to make it this weekend, you won’t be sorry. I found the recipe on Joy the Baker, but it’s from Martha Stewart Living, and I adapted it just a tad. I also used it as a dip as well as a spread.

½ cup olive oil, plus more for drizzling
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
4 small garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1/3 cup fresh mint, coarsely chopped
¼ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
2 Tbsp plus 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1 ¼ tsp coarse salt
fresh ground black pepper
warm pitas, bread or crackers(toasted or not)

Heat ¼ cup olive oil in a sauce pan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until very soft, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes. Add the rinsed and drained chickpeas and cook for another 3 minutes. Remove the mixture from the heat and let cool for 15 minutes.

Put the chopped mint and parsley into the bowl of a food processor. Add salt, pepper and lemon. Add the chickpea mixture. With the machine running, blend all of the ingredients and add the remaining ¼ cup of olive oil in a slow and steady steam, allowing it to emulsify.

Spread can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days, or transferred to a serving dish, drizzled with olive oil and served with warm pita bread. (In the background here: potato, green bean and basil salad.)

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