Creamy Pea Dip (a healthy and delicious appetizer or snack!)
This easy and healthy pea dip tastes of warm weather and sunshine, no matter the season. The base for the dip comes from defrosted frozen peas. Frozen peas have already been blanched, so there’s no need to cook them. I simply leave the bag on the counter for a few hours, or dunk the bag in warm water to defrost them quickly (you can also pop the bag in the fridge overnight). Goat cheese gives the dip a gentle richness without overpowering the sweetness from the peas. A mix of fresh leafy herbs flavors the dip. I love tarragon and mint (those are the two “happiest” herbs, in my opinion!), but basil is also delicious. The dip is fabulous with veggies or garlic crostini (see the notes below), or as a spread on toasted bread.
Servings: 6 people
- 1 large clove garlic, peeled
- 1 10-ounce bag frozen peas (preferably petite peas), defrosted
- 4 ounces goat cheese
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs, such as mint, tarragon and/or basil
- 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon water
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
In a food processor with the blade running, drop the garlic through the feed tube to chop. Add the peas, goat cheese, herbs, Parmesan cheese, lemon juice and water, and season with salt and pepper. Process until creamy, scraping down the sides occasionally. Taste and season with more salt and pepper as needed (don’t be shy with the salt, as it’s integral to the flavor!). Serve the dip with crostini (see the notes below) and/or vegetables for dipping, or slather it on toasted bread as a healthy tartine. It’s also fabulous with pasta!
Do Ahead: The dip can be refrigerated for up to 1 day.
Garlic crostini: To make garlic crostini, heat the oven or (a toaster oven) to 375˚ F (190˚C). Brush 1/2-inch-thick slices of French bread on both sides with olive oil. Line the bread on a baking sheet and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook 6 to 8 minutes, or until lightly crisp on the bottom. Flip and cook an additional 6 to 8 minutes, or until toasted on the other side. Remove the pan from the oven and immediately rub each crostini with a halved garlic clove. The crostini can be made several hours in advance and left out at room temperature.
Pea dip tips:
- I prefer frozen petite peas, which tend to be sweeter than regular peas.
- You’ll need a food processor for the sauce. I use this 14-cup model, which I use to whip up a zillion different recipes, such as this green tahini sauce and these granola clusters.
- Be sure to use fresh lemon juice, not bottled, since it has a cleaner, better flavor.
- You can use grated Pecorino Romano or Grana Padano in place of the Parmesan.