Easy and spicy, this Tex-Mex fave also makes a terrific spread
The Super Bowl is rushing toward us like a 300-pound lineman. So get those party platters spinning!
You’ll need plenty of munchies and goodies. One of our favorites is this spicy Jalapeño Black Bean Dip. It’s an easy recipe, and fast to make. So you’ll have more time to spend with your guests.
And watch your team win. Or not.
This recipe makes a fairly thick, viscous dip – so it’s perfect for dunking corn chips or spreading on a cracker. You could even use it as a sandwich spread.
We use canned black beans for this recipe, so it’s quick and easy. You could also use dried black beans, though that would take longer (see Notes). No black beans on hand? Pinto beans would work too.
The basic recipe calls for one can of black beans, which yields about enough dip for a bag of chips (depending on how large the bag is, of course, and how much you load onto each chip). If in doubt, it’s easy to double the recipe. Or triple it!
This recipe takes 10 to 15 minutes to make. You can prepare it a day ahead if you want (refrigerate the dip in an airtight container). Leftovers keep well for several days.
- 1 15-ounce can black beans
- 1 garlic clove (or to taste)
- ¼ onion, chopped roughly (very much to taste; we like to use red or yellow onion)
- 1 to 2 jalapeño peppers (either green or red; to taste)
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- ¼ teaspoon dried cumin
- ½ teaspoon ancho chile powder (may substitute another chile powder; or use chili powder – see Notes)
- a few pinches of salt, to taste (see Notes)
- ~2 tablespoons fresh cilantro
- garnish of grated Cotija cheese and/or jalapeño slices (optional; see Notes)
- tortilla chips for dipping
- Open the can of black beans, pour the contents into a strainer or colander, then rinse off the gunk the beans are stored in.
- Peel the garlic, chop it roughly, then add it to the bowl of a food processor.
- Cut an onion in half, then half again. Peel one quarter, then chop it roughly and add it to the bowl of the food processor. Reserve the rest of the onion for another use.
- Wash the jalapeño pepper(s) and cut off the stem ends. Cut the peppers in half lengthwise. Use a teaspoon to scoop out the ribs and seeds (be careful – the oil on these is hot, so avoid touching your eyes). Chop the peppers roughly and add them to the bowl of the food processor. Then wash your hands with soap and water to remove the hot jalapeño oil from your skin.
- Pulse the food processor a few times to finely chop the garlic, onion, and jalapeño.
- Add the black beans to the food processor. Squeeze the lime juice and add it to the mix. Add the cumin, chile powder, and salt. Pulse the food processor until the beans are almost the consistency you prefer (most people like this dip to be fairly smooth, though chunky is also good).
- Wash the cilantro, chop it roughly, then add it to the food processor. Pulse until it’s just incorporated into the dip. Taste the dip, then adjust seasonings if necessary.
- Scrape the dip from the food processor into a serving bowl. Garnish, if you wish, with grated Cotija cheese and/or jalapeño slices. Serve with tortilla chips.
- Want to use dried black beans in this dish? Remember that one pound of dried beans equals about three to four 15-ounce cans: Pick over the beans to remove any dirt or grit, then soak the beans at least 8 hours. When ready to cook, drain the beans, then place them in a cooking pot and add enough water to cover the beans by about an inch. Simmer for 1½ hours. Drain the beans and cool them, then proceed with the recipe.
- We like to garnish this dip with Cotija cheese (Queso Cotija), which is a hard, crumbly, salty Mexican cheese. We grate an ounce (maybe a bit less) and sprinkle it over the dip when using it as garnish.
- You could also substitute Queso Fresco (which is slightly softer) or Parmesan (which has a flavor that’s somewhat similar to Cotija).
- We love jalapeño peppers, so we also add a slice (or several dice) as a garnish.
- BTW, if jalapeño is too hot for you, skip it entirely. The dip will still be good.
- Or if you really like heat, you could use canned chipotle peppers, which are smoked jalapeños (use a bit of the adobo sauce they’re packed in, too).
- Chile (with an e) powder consists of ground chilies. Chili (with an i) powder is a blend of chile powder plus other seasonings (usually oregano, cumin, coriander, and salt).
- We suggest using dried ancho chile powder in this dip. It’s available in most supermarkets and is fairly mild. Dried chipotle chile powder would also work well, but it’s much spicier than ancho. Or you could substitute chili powder.
- By the way, if this dip isn’t as spicy as you’d like, just stir in hot sauce to taste.
- You could also add some dried coriander to this dip if you’d like.
- A tablespoon or so of tomato paste, or ¼ cup of salsa, would also be a nice addition.
- We use a few pinches of kosher salt when we season this dip. Kosher salt has larger flakes than regular table salt, so it’s less salty by volume. If you’re using regular table salt, keep that in mind. But in any case, season to your taste, not ours.
“So the Patriots are playing in the Super Bowl – again,” said Mrs. Kitchen Riffs. “Are they going to rename it the Brady Bowl?”
“At least this year they’re playing the Eagles,” I said. “Makes an old Philadelphia boy like me feel proud.”
“Are you sure you want to align yourself with the Eagles fanbase?” asked Mrs K R.
“Hey, Eagles fans are the most dedicated crazies in the world!” I said.
“I’ll say,” said Mrs K R. “I hear they had to grease the light poles in Philly to keep fans from climbing them during the playoffs.”
“True,” I said. “But that’s what I’d expect from Philadelphia, home of the Liberty Bell!”
“Which is cracked, by the way,” said Mrs K R. “And then there’s that jail cell they have permanently installed in the Eagles’ stadium. For when the fans get too engaged.”
“The authorities are just thinking ahead!” I said. “As befits the home of Benjamin Franklin.”
“I also read about that poll of NFL players,” said Mrs K R. “They say Eagles fans are the most intimidating in the league.”
“OK, so they’re a little over enthusiastic,” I mumble. “But I’m sure we could charm them with a delicious dip like this!”
“Nice segue, chip man,” said Mrs K R. “I’m thinking you felt a need to change the subject to something less spicy. Like a jalapeño-laced dip.”
Chile enough for you?
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