Springtime is party time – I mean, after 6 months of winter we are finally seeing some sunshine and above freezing temperatures. And if you think I live in Alaska, think again – it’s the good ole New England and our snow just melted away two days ago!!!
Plus: since the next winter is just six months away, we are now all scrambling to have as many outdoor parties and get togethers as we can, to maximize the fun and the sun. These days, when it comes to parties good, rich dips are a necessity. Salsa and guacamole, many different types of hummus, including one of my favorites – the roasted beet hummus, and even jackfruit “crab” dip are all fantastic and versatile. All you need to do is bring couple of select dips out, and with some crackers (like these amazing seed crackers), or fresh bread, perhaps with some olives thrown in for good measure, and maybe dolmas (I have a thing for dolmas!), you will have an instant feast!
If you are looking for a dip the is a bit out of the ordinary, then look no further. This Roasted Asparagus and Spinach Dip has it all: charred roasted asparagus (you can grill them if you prefer), vibrant green spinach, loads of smoothness from the cashews, and subtle cheesiness from the nutritional yeast.
When you are using cashews to make vegan cheese, creams, sour cream or similar, it is best to use raw cashews and to soak them in cold water overnight – do this in the fridge, please! The soaking softens the tough nut and make cashews much easier to blend into smooth and silky consistency.
Depending on the type of blender you have you may want to start by adding liquids first, than thawed spinach (I find that using frozen spinach that has been thawed out and gently squeezed works well here), then asparagus, nutritional yeast, lemon juice and zest, and finally cashews that have been washed and drained. The stronger the blender, the smoother your dip can get. I like a bit of a texture in the dip, but it is up to you to decide how much blending makes sense based on your preference.
Enjoy this dip immediately, and although it can store for a day or two, you won’t need to worry about that – this dip will be long gone!!!
Roasted Asparagus and Spinach Dip
What you’ll need:
- 1 bunch of asparagus, trimmed (about 1 lbs (454 g))
- 2 cups frozen spinach
- 1 cup unsweetened, plain almond milk
- 1 cup cashews, soaked overnight, then drained and rinsed
- 1-2 tablespoons nutritional yeast (adjust to taste)
- 1/2 lemon, juice and zest
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Cooking spray
What you’ll do:
- Preheat oven to 425 F (220 C), or the grill to the same temperature.
- Wash and trim the asparagus. Try to remove as much of the wooden part of stems, then spread the spears on the parchment paper lined baking sheet. Spray with cooking spray and roast for 20-30 minutes with occasional stirring. You can also grill the asparagus. Either way you are looking to cook the asparagus through while letting it caramelize and char.
- Place all the ingredients into a blender. Nutritional yeast is an acquired taste and you may want to add just a bit (1 teaspoon or so) and check for taste before adding more. Blend until smooth, then serve with your favorite chips, pretzel sticks, bread… The color of this spread is fantastic, and it goes well with Easter, being green and fresh. Enjoy the spring!
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