You may be surprised how well beet works with chili and za’atar. Its sweetness takes on a seriously savory edge. You can serve this as a starter, with bread, or as part of a mezze. If the beet is watery and the dip doesn’t hold its shape, consider adding a little mashed potato to help thicken it.
• 2 pounds medium beets
• 2 cloves garlic, crushed
• 1 small red chili, seeded and finely chopped
• Rounded 1 cup Greek yogurt
• 1 tablespoon date syrup or maple syrup
• 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus extra to finish
• 1 tablespoon za’atar
• 2 green onions, thinly sliced
• 2 tablespoon toasted hazelnuts, coarsely crushed
• 2 ounces soft goat’s milk cheese, crumbled
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Wash beets and place in a roasting pan. Roast uncovered until a knife slides easily into the center, about 1 hour. When they are cool enough to handle, peel beets and cut each into about 6 pieces. Allow to cool.
2. Place beets, garlic, chili and yogurt in food processor and blend to a smooth paste. Transfer to mixing bowl and stir in date syrup, olive oil, za’atar and 1 teaspoon salt. Taste and add more salt if you like.
3. Transfer mixture to flat serving plate and use the back of a spoon to spread it around the plate. Scatter green onions, hazelnuts and cheese on top and finally drizzle with a bit of oil. Serve at room temperature.
Find more delicious whole-food dips and spreads in Take a Dip!: Whole-food Appetizers.