50 International Dips
Add some global flavor to your table with these easy appetizers.
Clockwise from top right: Thai Peanut Dip (No. 38), Creamy Pesto Dip (No. 7), Tzatziki (No. 2), Sweet Potato Skordalia (No. 44), Ginger Beet Dip (No. 40)
Each recipe serves 6 to 8 people.
1. Greek Red Pepper Feta Dip Pulse 1 1/2 cups crumbled feta in a food processor with 2 roasted red peppers, 1/3 cup olive oil, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 1 teaspoon dried oregano, 1 garlic clove and a pinch of cayenne until almost smooth. Add 2 tablespoons chopped parsley and season with salt; pulse to combine.
2. Tzatziki Grate 2 Persian cucumbers on the large holes of a box grater; squeeze dry in a clean kitchen towel. Combine with 2 cups plain Greek yogurt, 1/4 cup olive oil, 2 tablespoons each chopped dill and mint, 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar and 1 grated small garlic clove. Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with more olive oil.
3. Raita Make Tzatziki (No. 2), replacing the dill with cilantro and the white wine vinegar with the juice of 1 lemon. Stir in 2 chopped plum tomatoes, 2 teaspoons each grated peeled ginger and chopped jalapeño and 1/2 teaspoon garam masala.
4. Spinach-Artichoke Dip with Feta Squeeze dry one 10-ounce box thawed frozen chopped spinach; mix with 1 cup each mayonnaise, sour cream and chopped canned artichoke hearts, 1/2 cup each grated parmesan and crumbled feta, 2 tablespoons chopped dill, 1 chopped garlic clove and 1 teaspoon lemon zest. Season with salt and pepper. Serve in a bread bowl.
5. Cannellini Bean Dip Cook 5 sliced garlic cloves and 2 teaspoons chopped rosemary in 1/2 cup olive oil until the garlic is softened, 2 minutes; let cool. Puree two 15-ounce cans cannellini beans (drained and rinsed) in a food processor with the garlic mixture, 1 tablespoon lemon juice and 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes until smooth; season with salt.
6. Bagna Cauda Cook 12 anchovies and 8 minced garlic cloves in 3/4 cup olive oil over very low heat until the anchovies dissolve and the garlic is very soft but not browned, about 10 minutes. Add 4 tablespoons butter and stir until melted. Serve with crudités.
7. Creamy Pesto Dip Beat 8 ounces softened cream cheese and 1 cup sour cream with a mixer until smooth. Stir in 1/2 cup pesto. Top with more pesto.
8. Mint Fava Bean Dip Cook 2 cups frozen shelled fava beans in boiling salted water until just tender, about 3 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold water. Puree in a food processor with 1/2 cup each olive oil and fresh mint, 1/4 cup grated pecorino and the juice of 1 lemon; season with salt and red pepper flakes.
9. Aioli Whisk 2 egg yolks with the juice of 1/2 lemon, 1 tablespoon water and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water until slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Off the heat, whisk in 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard, then slowly whisk in 1/2 cup each olive oil and vegetable oil. Stir in 2 to 3 grated garlic cloves. Season with more lemon juice and salt and thin with water if needed.
10. Pimentón Aioli Make Aioli (No. 9), adding 3/4 teaspoon pimentón (smoked paprika) with the mustard. Season with up to 1 teaspoon sherry vinegar instead of lemon juice. Dust with more pimentón.
11. Caponata Heat 1/4 cup olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 2 chopped peeled eggplants, 1 chopped red onion and 1/2 teaspoon salt; season with pepper. Cook, stirring, until the eggplant is tender and browned, about 10 minutes. Add 2 minced garlic cloves and 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano and cook 30 seconds. Stir in 1/2 cup tomato puree, 2 tablespoons each capers, dried currants and white wine vinegar and 1 teaspoon sugar; let cool. Pulse in a food processor; season with salt.
12. Romesco Dip Cook 1/3 cup blanched almonds and 1 chopped slice white bread in 3 tablespoons olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat until golden, 3 minutes. Transfer to a blender and puree with one 12-ounce jar roasted red peppers (drained), 1 small garlic clove and 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika until chunky; season with salt and pepper. With the machine running, slowly add 1/4 cup olive oil and puree until almost smooth. Add 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar and season with salt and pepper; pulse.
13. Chipotle Romesco Dip Make Romesco Dip (No. 12), replacing the almonds with cashews. Add 1 small chipotle in adobo with the red peppers.
14. Whipper Ricotta Beat 2 cups fresh ricotta and 1/4 cup heavy cream with a mixer until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the zest of 1 lemon and 2 teaspoons chopped thyme; season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with pepper and flaky sea salt.
15. Herbed Labneh Mix 2 cups labneh (or plain Greek yogurt) with 1/4 cup each chopped parsley, dill and scallions, 1 teaspoon each lemon zest and dried mint, 1/2 teaspoon each red pepper flakes and kosher salt and 1 grated garlic clove. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with za’atar (Middle Eastern spice blend).
16. Smoky Eggplant Labneh Toss 2 chopped Japanese eggplants with 2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 teaspoon kosher salt. Bake at 450 degrees F until browned and tender, about 20 minutes; let cool. Make Herbed Labneh (No. 15), omitting the dill. Top with the eggplant and sprinkle with smoked paprika and za’atar.
17. Herbed Tahini Pulse 1/3 cup each packed fresh mint, cilantro and parsley in a food processor with 1 chopped scallion, 3/4 cup tahini, 1/3 cup water, the juice of 1/2 lemon and 1 teaspoon kosher salt. Thin with more water if needed. Season with more lemon juice and salt.
18. Hummus Puree two 15-ounce cans chickpeas (drained and rinsed) in a food processor with 1/3 cup each water, olive oil and tahini, the juice of 1 lemon, 1 small garlic clove, 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt, 1 teaspoon ground cumin and a pinch of cayenne until smooth.
19. Cilantro-Jalapeño Hummus Make Hummus (No. 18), adding 3 cups fresh cilantro and 2 seeded jalapeños with the chickpeas and replacing the lemon juice with the juice of 1 to 2 limes.
20. Warm Hummus with Lamb Make Hummus (No. 18) and spread in a 2-quart baking dish; cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees F, 15 minutes. Brown 8 ounces ground lamb in olive oil in a skillet. Add 1 chopped garlic clove, 1 tablespoon tomato paste, 1 teaspoon each pumpkin pie spice and harissa (Moroccan chile paste) and 1/4 cup water. Simmer until thickened, 3 minutes. Season with salt. Spread over the hummus and top with chopped parsley and toasted pine nuts.
21. Bengali Tomato Chutney Fry 3 fresh curry leaves, 3/4 teaspoon each cumin seeds and mustard seeds and 1 dried red chile in 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in a saucepan until the mustard seeds pop, 1 minute. Add 1 tablespoon grated peeled ginger and 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds and cook 30 seconds. Add 2 cups crushed canned tomatoes, 1/4 cup each sugar, golden raisins and cider vinegar and simmer, stirring occasionally, until very thick, 1 hour; let cool. Season with salt and thin with water if needed.
22. Creamy Tomato Chutney Make Bengali Tomato Chutney (No. 21). Mix with 1 1/2 cups plain yogurt and 1/4 cup chopped cilantro.
23. Moroccan Carrot Dip Sauté 1 pound chopped carrots with 2 teaspoons ras el hanout (Moroccan seasoning) and 1 teaspoon each sugar and kosher salt in olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat until softened, 5 minutes. Add 1 cup water and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook until the carrots are tender, about 15 minutes. Uncover; simmer 3 minutes. Transfer to a food processor and puree with 2 tablespoons water and 1 to 2 tablespoons harissa (Moroccan chile paste). Thin with more water if needed. Season with salt. Drizzle with olive oil and top with chopped cilantro.
24. Olive-Artichoke Tapenade Pulse 1 cup pitted niçoise olives in a food processor with 1/2 cup marinated artichoke hearts (drained), 1/4 cup fresh basil, 2 anchovies, 2 tablespoons capers and 1 teaspoon each dijon mustard and fresh thyme. With the machine running, slowly add 1/2 cup olive oil until smooth.
25. Baba Ghanoush Roast 5 medium whole eggplants (2 1/2 pounds) at 450 degrees F until charred and very tender, about 20 minutes. Let cool, then halve and scrape the flesh into a colander; let drain. Puree the flesh in a food processor with 1/4 cup olive oil, 3 tablespoons each tahini and chopped parsley and the juice of 1/2 to 1 lemon. Season with salt.
26. Cheese Fondue Rub the inside of a fondue pot with the cut sides of a halved garlic clove. Toss 8 ounces each grated gruyère and emmentaler cheese with 1 tablespoon cornstarch. Bring 1 cup dry white wine to a simmer in a medium saucepan. Gradually whisk in the cheeses until melted and smooth, then stir in 2 teaspoons lemon juice and season with freshly grated nutmeg and pepper. Serve in the fondue pot.
27. Stout and Cheddar Fondue Toss 12 ounces shredded Irish cheddar and 4 ounces cubed processed cheese (such as Velveeta) with 1 tablespoon each cornstarch and mustard powder. Bring 1 cup stout beer to a simmer in a saucepan. Gradually whisk in the cheeses until melted. Stir in 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce. Serve in a fondue pot.
28. Queso Fundido Heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil in a 9-inch cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Add 1 chopped shallot, 1 chopped garlic clove and 1/2 teaspoon each ground cumin and kosher salt; sauté until softened, 3 minutes. Carefully add 1/4 cup tequila or water; simmer until almost dry. Off the heat, stir in 6 ounces each grated cheddar and pepper jack cheese. Broil until bubbling, 2 to 3 minutes. Top with sliced pickled jalapeños and torn cilantro.
29. Chorizo Queso Brown 4 ounces crumbled fresh chorizo in olive oil in a large skillet; remove with a slotted spoon. Add 1/2 cup each half-and-half and beer and bring to a simmer. Stir in 1 cup shredded mild cheddar and 6 ounces cubed processed cheese (such as Velveeta) until melted. Stir in the chorizo and 2 tablespoons chopped pickled jalapeño.
30. Guacamole Mash 3 diced avocados with the juice of 1 lime and 1 teaspoon kosher salt. Stir in 1 chopped plum tomato, 1/2 cup chopped cilantro, 1/2 minced small red onion and 1 tablespoon chopped pickled jalapeño.
31. Guacamole Rajas Toss 1 thinly sliced poblano pepper and 1 thinly sliced white onion with 2 tablespoons vegetable oil and season with salt and pepper. Broil, stirring occasionally, until lightly charred and tender, 10 to 15 minutes, then roughly chop. Make Guacamole (No. 30), replacing the red onion with the poblano-onion mixture.
32. Black Bean Dip Pulse two 15-ounce cans black beans (drained) in a food processor with 1 cup canned fire-roasted tomatoes with green chiles, 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, 1 grated garlic clove, 2 tablespoons olive oil, the juice of 1 lime and 1 teaspoon each ground cumin, ancho chile powder and kosher salt.
33. Classic Tomatillo Salsa Broil 1 pound whole tomatillos (husked and rinsed), 3 unpeeled garlic cloves and 1 whole jalapeño until charred and tender, 5 to 6 minutes. Let cool slightly; peel the garlic and remove the stem and skin from the jalapeño. Puree the tomatillos, garlic and jalapeño in a food processor with 1 cup fresh cilantro and the juice of 1 lime. Season with salt.
34. Cascabel Chile Salsa Broil 5 unpeeled garlic cloves, 1 pound cored plum tomatoes and 1 thickly sliced large onion, turning, until charred and softened, about 7 minutes for the garlic and 15 minutes for the tomatoes and onion. Let cool slightly; peel the garlic. Toast 5 dried cascabel chiles (stemmed and seeded) in a dry skillet over medium heat, 3 minutes. Add 1/2 cup water and bring to a boil, then puree in a blender with the tomatoes, garlic, onion, 1 tablespoon cider vinegar and 1/2 teaspoon sugar. Thin with water if needed. Season with salt and pepper.
35. Charred Tomato Salsa Sauté 1 cup grape tomatoes in vegetable oil in a skillet over medium-high heat until charred and softened, 5 minutes. Let cool, then roughly chop. Soak 1/2 cup chopped white onion in ice water, 15 minutes; drain. Toss the charred tomatoes with the onion, 2 diced vine-ripened tomatoes, 1 diced jalapeño (seeded), 1 minced small garlic clove and 1/2 cup chopped cilantro. Season with lime juice and salt.
36. Creamy Ginger Miso Dip Whisk 1 cup mayonnaise with 1/2 cup white miso paste, 2 tablespoons each rice vinegar and honey and 1 tablespoon grated peeled ginger. Season with salt and pepper.
37. Edamame Dip Cook 2 cups frozen shelled edamame in boiling water as the label directs; rinse under cold water. Transfer to a food processor and puree with 1/4 cup mayonnaise, 2 sliced scallions, 3 tablespoons water, 2 tablespoons pickled ginger, 1 tablespoon each pickled ginger brine and rice vinegar, 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil and 1 teaspoon each shichimi togarashi (Japanese spice mix), sugar and kosher salt. Thin with more water if needed. Top with more togarashi and sliced scallions.
38. Thai Peanut Dip Puree 1 cup creamy peanut butter in a food processor with 3/4 cup canned coconut milk, 2 tablespoons soy sauce, the juice of 2 limes, 2 teaspoons chili-garlic sauce and 1 tablespoon chopped peeled ginger until smooth.
39. Miso Cauliflower Dip Toss the florets from 1 small head cauliflower with 2 tablespoons olive oil; season with salt and pepper. Roast at 425 degrees F until tender and lightly browned, about 45 minutes. Transfer to a food processor and puree with 1/4 cup each water and white miso paste, 2 tablespoons lemon juice and 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil. Thin with more water if needed.
40. Ginger Beet Dip Puree 2 medium peeled cooked beets with 1 cup plain Greek yogurt, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 tablespoon each grated peeled ginger, lemon juice and honey and 1 teaspoon each ground coriander and kosher salt. Top with sliced scallions.
41. Kimchi Pimiento Cheese Puree 6 ounces softened cream cheese in a food processor with 1/2 cup mayonnaise. Add 4 ounces shredded cheddar, 1/2 cup chopped kimchi (drained), 1/3 cup chopped roasted red peppers, 2 chopped scallions and ⅛ teaspoon cayenne and pulse until combined but still chunky. Top with sliced scallions.
42. Caribbean Layered Dip Beat 8 ounces softened cream cheese with 1 cup sour cream, 1 tablespoon jerk seasoning, 1 teaspoon kosher salt and habanero hot sauce to taste with a mixer until smooth. Spread in an 8-inch glass baking dish. Top with one 15-ounce can black beans (drained and rinsed) and 1 cup each finely diced avocado, mango and red bell pepper. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup each chopped scallions and cilantro.
43. Skordalia Cook 2 whole medium russet potatoes in boiling water until tender, about 20 minutes. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup cooking water; let cool slightly, then peel and rice the potatoes into a large bowl (or mash until very smooth). Pulse 1/2 cup toasted blanched almonds in a food processor with 1/2 cup olive oil, 5 garlic cloves and the juice of 1 lemon until smooth. Stir into the potatoes and thin with the cooking water as needed. Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with chopped parsley.
44. Sweet Potato Skordalia Make Skordalia (No. 43), replacing the russet potatoes with sweet potatoes, the almonds with 1/4 cup pepitas and the lemon juice with lime juice. Use only 3 garlic cloves. Do not top with olive oil or parsley.
45. Hot Crab Dip Beat 4 ounces softened cream cheese with a mixer until smooth. Beat in 1/2 cup each mayonnaise, sour cream and shredded Monterey Jack cheese, 1 pound lump crabmeat (picked over), 1 tablespoon flour, 2 teaspoons each Old Bay Seasoning and Worcestershire sauce, 1 teaspoon hot sauce, 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest, 2 sliced scallions, 1 grated garlic clove and 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt. Transfer to a 1 1/2-quart baking dish and top with 1/4 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese. Bake at 375 degrees F until lightly browned and bubbling, 20 to 25 minutes. Top with more scallions.
46. Buffalo Cauliflower Dip Toss the florets from 1 head cauliflower with 1 tablespoon olive oil; season with salt. Roast at 425 degrees F until tender and browned, about 40 minutes. Mix 8 ounces softened cream cheese with 1/2 cup sour cream, 1/3 cup cayenne pepper hot sauce and 1/4 cup milk. Fold in the cauliflower and mash with a spoon. Spread in a pie plate and sprinkle with 1/4 cup each shredded Monterey Jack and crumbled blue cheese and 2 chopped scallions. Bake until hot, 15 to 20 minutes.
47. Peppered Ranch Dip Whisk 3/4 cup mayonnaise with 1/3 cup each sour cream and buttermilk, 1 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper, 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes and 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder. Stir in 1 tablespoon each chopped parsley and chives; season with hot sauce and salt.
48. Lemon-Basil Ranch Dip Whisk 1 cup mayonnaise with 1/3 cup buttermilk, the zest of 1 lemon, the juice of 1/2 lemon and 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder. Stir in 1/4 cup chopped basil and 1 tablespoon chopped chives. Season with salt and pepper. Refrigerate 1 hour.
49. Green Goddess Dip Blend 1/2 cup mayonnaise with 1/3 cup each chopped parsley and chives, 1/4 cup each sour cream and chopped tarragon, 2 anchovies, 1 minced garlic clove, the juice of 1 lemon, 1 tablespoon capers and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt; season with pepper.
50. Onion-Leek Dip Cook 1 chopped onion and 1 chopped leek in 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat with 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt and a few grinds of pepper until deep golden brown, 20 minutes; let cool. Puree 8 ounces softened cream cheese in a food processor with 1 cup sour cream and 3 chopped scallions; season with salt and pepper. Top with the onion-leek mixture. Refrigerate 1 hour.
Photographs by Ryan Dausch