Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Reverse engineering

Last year when we were living in temporary accommodation and I had only the TUK at my disposal, I had to dispense with certain aspects of company meal prep (since dispensing with the company was obviously not an option). Appetizers were an obvious choice, especially after I discovered a fresh and delicious basil-cashew-parmesan dip readily available in my local supermarket. This was wildly successful with any number of guests, and especially with DP, who took to requesting it before every company meal. Once I unpacked my food processor, however, I began to think less about how tasty and effortless it was, and more about how much each little tub cost. And since its primary ingredients were right there on the label, I thought it might be feasible to concoct my own version. This is the result of my experimentation.

Reverse engineered basil-cashew-parmesan dip
I prefer the consistency of this to be on the chunky side, as that is more like the original dip. If you prefer a smoother, more pesto-like consistency, then you will probably want to add the extra olive oil, as indicated below, and maybe even a bit more.

2 cups firmly packed basil leaves
.5 cup roasted salted cashews
.5 cup shredded parmigiano reggiano cheese
1 clove garlic
1 anchovy
2 tsp lemon juice
2-3 Tbsp olive oil

Place all ingredients except olive oil and salt in bowl of food processor, and puree to a chunky paste. Drizzle 2 Tbsp of olive oil over, sprinkle with salt, and process again. Look at consistency and add third Tbsp of olive oil if desired.

Makes about 1 cup of dip. Serve with pita chips or other tasty dip-conveyor of choice.


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