White beans (or cannellini beans) are one of the easiest things to puree into a dip. They're creamy and mild, so they marry well with a lot of different flavors. We've reviewed Mark Bittman's Rosemary Lemon White Bean Dip, and now we're weighing in on a spread from Melissa Clark of the New York Times. It's full of curly garlic scapes, which are in season.
We have one pretty major change, though...
Clark admits that, although garlic scapes have a milder flavor than raw garlic cloves, she worried the flavor of the dip would be too strong. She writes:
It had a velvety texture that wrapped itself around an assertive, racy wallop so intense that I worried I'd scare even my garlic-loving parents out of the house. Instead, my guests closed in on the bowl like house cats to cream cheese.
Well, we weren't scared out of the house, and we did enjoy the dip, but we were tasting garlic all night (the lingering flavor woke us up — no joke) and into the next day. Yee-haw, it was strong. Not exactly a polite cocktail party dip, in our opinion.
So, we scooped the dip back into the food processor, added another can of white beans (doubling the original amount) and streamed in extra olive oil to get it creamy and blended. It needed another pinch of salt, but overall we were happy with the results. Still velvety, still flecked with green, still very very garlicky, but not so abrasive.
If you get garlic scapes in your CSA or see them at the greenmarket, and you love garlic, give this a try. It does have a beautifully fresh, green, garlic flavor. Just consider yourself warned.
Read Clark's full article, with recipes: A Garlic Festival Without a Single Clove
(Image: Elizabeth Passarella)