When ever you make a veggie tray to take to a party, you always serve it with dip, right? It definitely tastes more appealing to eat vegetables when smothered in some sort of ranch or French Onion dip. However, I always feel a bit guilty because I know that the benefit of eating all those good, fresh veggies was most likely just cancelled out by the artery-clogging fat of the dip.
I’m not alone in this feeling, am I?
So this year, I decided to plant my own little herb garden. I figure, they are perennials, so they should come back next year, they will look nice, and I can actually use them throughout the summer and early autumn in my cooking. Now if you don’t have your own herbs, it could get pretty expensive to buy all of this at the grocery store. But, I have probably spent around $15 for all of these herb plants (probably about what it would cost to buy fresh herbs at the grocery store for just this recipe!) and I can use them all summer long… and hopefully, they will make it through the winter and grow again next year! So making this will literally cost just a few cents by the time I average it out over everything I will use these herbs for this year. Well worth the initial investment!
Top: peppermint, spearmint, mojito Middle: dill, basil, thyme Bottom: lavender, chives
If you are new to gardening, here are some pointers on starting your own herb garden that are important to know, such as how to prepare the soil, where to plant your herbs, etc. Or, if you have limited space, or live in an apartment, you pay even want to consider a tower container garden, which is compact enough to go on a balcony or rooftop. Tower gardens are also especially good for very dry areas because they use less water as well…
So now, instead of eating a fattening pre-made dip with preservatives and who-knows-what in it, this fresh dip is a much healthier alternative:
And the best thing about this dip is that it is so versatile. It can be used on sandwiches, burgers, even on pasta… so I guess, it really is a sauce too! However you choose to use it…. healthy, fresh, delicious!
Creamy Avocado & Mint Dip
Creamy Avocado & Mint Dip
- ½ cup shredded cucumber (squeeze liquid out)
- 3 cups fresh mint leaves (I use a mixture of peppermint, spearmint, & mojito)
- ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 large garlic cloves
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 teaspoon grated lemon zest
- ½ avocado (you can add the entire avocado if desired)
- ½ teaspoon salt
Put all ingredients into a food processor, except for the olive oil. Start to pulse the food processor and blend ingredients, drizzling in the olive oil slowly.
I love to add herbs and ingredients by taste, so you may want to start with this recipe and then tweak it a bit by adding more of any ingredients of the flavors that you want to bring out…
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