I like hummus as much as or more than the next vegan. After all, I have between ten and twelve hummus recipes on this blog, depending on what you count as hummus. But lately I’ve been thinking that I eat too many chickpeas and need a little variety in my bean dips, so I’ve been doing a little experimenting with other types of beans.
This red bean-based spread is a variation on Lobio, a popular dish in the former Soviet republic of Georgia. I adapted a recipe from one of my favorite cookbooks, Madhur Jaffrey’s World-of-the-East Vegetarian Cooking, by reducing the amount of walnuts, increasing the amount of beans, and omitting the olive oil. The original recipe kept the kidney beans whole so that it was more of a salad than a spread, but I wanted to stuff it into pita bread and make it into sandwiches so I slightly mashed the beans along with the walnut dressing. The results were a tangy spread that tastes great packed into a pita with a lot of vegetables or spread on French bread piled high with lettuce, tomato, and sliced radishes. My recipe makes a lot, but the good news is it keeps well in the fridge for at least a week.
This would be a great base for sandwiches for your next picnic or 4th of July celebration. If you need more ideas for the 4th, check out my Vegan 4th of July Pinterest board, where I’ve been pinning everything from burgers to “ribz” to salads to red-white-and-blue desserts.
Walnut and Kidney Bean Spread
Makes a delicious spread or dip or a filling for sandwiches or pita bread. If you’d like to serve it as a salad instead of a spread, keep the beans whole and toss the dressing with them.
- 1/3 cup chopped walnuts
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 2 – 3 tablespoons vegetable broth
- 1/4 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or to taste)
- Generous grating black pepper
- 2 15-ounce cans kidney beans, rinsed and drained
- 3 tablespoons minced parsley
- 3 tablespoons finely sliced green onions
- Put the walnuts and garlic in a food processor and process until finely chopped, stopping machine and scraping down sides as necessary. Add the vinegar, 2 tablespoons broth, salt, cayenne and black pepper and process until it forms a chunky paste. Add additional broth if necessary.
- Add the well-drained beans to the processor and pulse about 6 to 8 times, enough to crush most of the beans but not puree them.
- Scrape the mixture into a large container and stir in half of the parsley and green onions. Sprinkle the rest on top. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour to allow flavors to blend. (The flavor improves with age, so if you have time, let it chill for several hours or overnight.) Check seasonings and add more vinegar, pepper, or salt to taste.
Preparation time: 10 minute(s) | Cooking time: 10 minute(s)
Number of servings (yield): 10
Nutrition (per serving): 102 calories, 24 calories from fat, 2.9g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 291.9mg sodium, 257.5mg potassium, 14.6g carbohydrates, 5.1g fiber, 1.8g sugar, 5.3g protein.
Enjoy your independence (day)!
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