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Friday, April 1, 2016

Spinach Avocado Dip



Some time ago, the New York Times published a guacamole recipe that included, horror of horrors, green peas!

The kerfuffle that arose from this deviation from the sacred guacamole text is something that I was aware of as I began working with ways to extend expensive avocados in my own version of guacamole. To avoid any similar concerns, I am calling this only "guacamole style" instead of the the "real" thing.

One of the nicest things about spinach in my experience is its willingness to stay in the background when other, stronger flavors are involved. The yogurt also refuses to fight with the avocado's flavor, even as it extends the smooth creaminess of the "alligator pear." As a result, the single avocado that would barely make enough guac to feed one or two people now becomes the basis for a party-sized bowl of dip.

Serving suggestion:  The photo above demonstrates what could be a light lunch. I have been experimenting with finding many different ways to serve beans, and this combination of refried, mixed, beans with the dip and home-baked tortillas is healthy and tasty. Give it a try for lunch or a light supper this weekend!




Guacamole Style Spinach Avocado Dip


1 large avocado
1 c plain yogurt, low-fat or full fat
4 c baby spinach leaves
4 to 6 large sprigs of cilantro, including stems
1/2 medium onion, coarsely chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, or to taste
1 to 2 cloves coarsely chopped garlic, to taste
1/2 t cumin (optional) 
salt to taste
1/4 to 1/3 c medium salsa (optional)

1.  Put all ingredients except salsa in processor bowl and blend until smooth. You will need to push the spinach down a few times for most even blending.

2. Stir in the salsa. Serve immediately or chill for half an hour.

Variations/Adjustments

If you want to more fully emphasize the avocado flavor, use two avocados.

10 to 12 oz of frozen chopped spinach, thawed and well-drained, can be substituted for fresh.

While the yogurt (and possibly the spinach too) seems to keep this dip from browning, a tablespoon or so of lime or lemon juice will add a nice brightness to the flavor.





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