Many versions of this creamy aubergine dip are to be found around the Mediterranean. This one is thickened with ground almonds, which add both texture and protein. Served with pitta bread and crunchy vegetable crudités, the dip makes a delicious snack or starter for 8, or a well-balanced lunch dish for 4.
In most recipes, aubergines are fried and they are notorious for soaking up the frying fat. For this dish they are dry-roasted, which keeps the overall fat content low. * Garlic is not just a valuable ingredient in the kitchen, its medicinal properties have been recognised for centuries. Naturopaths and herbalists use it to treat dozens of ailments, from athlete's foot to colds. * Olives are low in calories – just 30 kcal in 30 g (1 oz), which is about 10 olives – and most of the fat they contain is the healthy monounsaturated type. They are also a source of vitamin E.
The aubergine dip can be made 1–2 hours in advance and kept in the fridge. Let it return to room temperature before serving. * For a Moroccan white bean and yogurt dip, drain and rinse 2 cans of cannellini beans, about 410 g each. Put them in a food processor with 2 tbsp tahini, 1 tbsp lemon juice, ¼ tsp ground cumin and ¼ tsp ground coriander, and process until smooth. Alternatively, combine the ingredients in a bowl and purée using a hand-held blender. Stir in 150 g (5½ oz) Greek-style yogurt, 2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander, 1 tbsp chopped fresh mint, and salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with a sprig of fresh mint, and serve with sesame breadsticks or Arab flat bread, and crudités of cucumber and carrot sticks, and red and yellow pepper strips.
C * A, B1, B6, E, folate, niacin, calcium, copper, iron, potassium, zinc