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Braised Artichokes with Garlic, Raisins and White Beans

Greek Potato and Garlic Dip

 It's amazing what you can do with day old cooked potatoes! I was lying in bed wondering whether to make the same old nicoise salad for dinner when I came across a recipe for Skordalia in the magazine that I was reading. Skordalia is a greek potato dip, very pleasantly rustic in it's origins and absolutely delicious!I didn't like the recipe provided though so I created my own and I must modestly say that it's wonderful, so wonderful that I can barely keep my hands out of it. But it's also so  simple to make and is going to be a perfectly delightful beginning to our meal tonight!

All you need is a food processor or if you have a blender that will work fine too. I didn't use my VitaMix because too much blending too quickly would turn the potato into paste and I wanted to avoid that. Use fresh herbs if possible because in this dip they truly do make a difference!

In the bowl of a food processor add 3 redskin and 3 little (about 3 inches wide) Yukon gold potatoes that you've cooked and cooled. Then add 1/2 a cup of Marcona almonds, 3 cloves of garlic, 1/2 cup of seasoned bread crumbs, 2 tablespoons of FRESH lemon juice, 2 tablespoons of amber agave nectar and  
a heaping handful of parsley, rosemary and fresh sage.  

Turn the food processor on and pour in as much good olive oil as you need to create a smooth and creamy dip. Don't be shy with it, more just enhances the texture and brightens the taste. If I'd had some anchovies I would have added those too! When you are satisfied with the flavor add salt and pepper to taste. You'll need to add more salt than you think because the potatoes will absorb it, which is why throwing a couple of potatoes into any stew or soup that is a bit too salty quickly corrects that problem.

Place the dip into a pretty bowl and surround with freshly cut beans , sliced pretty peppers and other vegetables. You could also try fried zucchini which would be delicious paired with all of that lemon and garlic! Serve as a starter at  with a wonderful white wine or a chilled rose.  

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