A Divine Alternative To The Hummus Bowl
It's that time of year to host gatherings, brunch parties, and brainstorm for Mother's Day. A smattering of bright, seasonal vegetables with a vibrant spring-inspired dip is the perfect balance for appetizers or casual bites that won't fill guests up too much before the main event.
Green Goddess? What does that even mean? Well, it's traditionally a thick dressing made with many fresh herbs, along with sour cream and mayonnaise blended into it. Since I tend to go crazy with these first spring vegetables coming out at the farmers' markets, I like to replace the usual shallot with spring onion, and young green garlic for the garlic cloves (blend in those tops too for color). I also opt for different dairy options, which makes this version of green goddess dressing work very well as a dip.
I'll take whatever looks freshest for the actual vegetables to dunk into the dip. I love the crunch of sugar snap peas and delicately blanced asparagus, but feel free to use celery and carrots if that's what you have on hand. Try to add as much color as you can. Tossing in some multicolored radishes and varieties of cauliflower can be a lovely addition, too.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine all the fresh herbs: parsley, chives, dill, basil, and mint.
- Add the chopped green garlic, spring onions, Greek yogurt, cream cheese, and lemon juice with the zest. Using an immersion blender, purée all ingredients until a smooth consistency has formed. (If you don't have an immersion blender, combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.)
- Pour in the olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and pulse the mixture again until fully blended.
- Taste for seasoning, adjust if necessary, and refrigerate while preparing the vegetables.
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Prepare an ice bath for blanching the vegetables, and set aside.
- Drop the asparagus into the boiling water and cook for 3 minutes. Add the sugar snap peas and continue cooking 2 minutes more. Drain the vegetables into a colander and transfer the vegetables immediately to the ice bath to shock them.
- Meanwhile, cut the cucumber into thirds widthwise. Take one third, quarter it lengthwise, then cut each quarter in half to make small spears. Repeat with the remaining two thirds of the cucumber.
- Drain and dry the asparagus and sugar snap peas, and arrange these on a serving platter with the radishes, carrots, and cucumber spears. Transfer the green goddess dip to a bowl and serve with the crudité platter.