Saturday, December 6, 2008

White Bean Horseradish Spread for First Thursdays Over at Thursday Night Smackdown

I missed the First Thursday challenge last month on Thursday Night Smackdown. Each month Michelle challenges her readers to test the mettle of their cookbooks and issues a challenge in a certain category. For her orange food challenge, I made sweet potato fries. For her grilling challenge, I tried grilled pizzas for the first time.

This month's challenge was to make an appetizer. Last month, when we were in D.C., I picked up Recipes from an Ecological Kitchen by James Beard Award winner Lorna J. Sass at a used book store. It's an interesting cookbook because it was written in 1992 so there isn't any talk about everyone trying to be green. This was a cookbook written by a woman who has been part of the environmental movement before it was 
hip. I thought it was a great find. 
For the challenge, I made White Bean-Horseradish spread. It's really a dip. But there's no mayonnaise, sour cream or cream cheese in this dip. It's all healthy stuff - cooked great northern beans, prepared horse radish, a couple of tablespoons of olive oil, dried rosemary and salt. I suppose you could put this in the hummus category, but not really.

The dip was easy to make, but it's not something you can whip up at the last 
minute. The beans need to soak overnight, and then they need to be cooked for at least an hour and a half. But once those ten hours or so are over, it's a quick and easy recipe.

It's tasty, too. I did add a little more horseradish and salt than called for after tasting it, and if I make it again, I'll probably add more horseradish. It's an unexpected alternative to the normal party type dips you're used to. But that's okay because it's much better for you. 

My kids took one whiff of it and wouldn't go near it. Horseradish is potent stuff. I wouldn't have gone near it either as a kid. My husband thought it was bland. Like I said, I'd probably add more horseradish next time and probably a little more rosemary, too. But I liked it enough to put it in the "try again sometime with modifications" category. Most first time recipes end up in that category.
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Mountain Girl said...

Hi there - great site (I'm a 1st timer) - what kind of horseradish did you use? I've just pulled up my first plant and now need to find lots of things to use horsradish in!

Robin Shreeves said...

Mountain girl - Welcome to the site

I used prepared horseradish. You'll find it in the refrigerated section. It's basically grated horseradish root in vinegar. I'm sure you could make it yourself with your horseradish - just find a recipe for prepared horseradish.

I found this with a quick search

I can't vouch for it because I've never tried it but it's worth looking into