This is precisely the time of year when my thoughts and taste-buds turn to something lighter, fresher and with a bit of crunch, especially at lunch time. I am therefore happy to mix and match some deli meats, fish, cheese and veggies with a dip side dish to bring flavour and ‘moisture’ to a meal when the former can be a bit dry. Likewise I will contentedly greet a lunchbox with the same dip and some crudités for a lighter spring mid-day meal when out and about.
That said I don’t go a bundle on ready-made dips too often (they do have a place but, for me, not everyday). I therefore make my own salsas and dips whenever possible so that I know they are not loaded with additional sugars, preservatives and undesirable ingredients.
This is my latest fave one – a Greek Feta Dip that really does sing with flavour. The feta brings great savoury and cheesiness to the dip and a little goes a long way. I serve with with a topping of a Greek salsa – with all the usual Greek ingredients like tomatoes, olives, cucumber and herbs. The two together make a great side dish on a buffet table but also make, served singularly, a fabulous lunch box meal (in my bariatric bento box – details here) with extra dippers like carrot sticks, sliced radishes and whole mangetout. If I am especially hungry then a couple of wholemeal or protein crackers don’t go amiss alongside.
Pile up in a bowl for a buffet style meal or serve in single portions as liked. This quantity makes enough for about 4 but can be easily doubled or tripled to cope with bigger numbers or larger appetites. It will keep chilled in the refrigerator for up to about 5 days, stir well before serving.
FETA DIP WITH GREEK SALSA
100 g/4 oz light feta cheese
100 g/4 oz low-fat cream or soft cheese
2 tbsp fat-free Greek yogurt or quark
salt and freshly ground black pepper
40 g/1½ oz cucumber, chopped
100 g/4 oz red and yellow cherry tomatoes, quartered
4 whole stoned/pitted black/ripe Greek olives, halved
1 tbsp chopped red onion
1 tbsp chopped fresh dill
1 tbsp crumbled light feta cheese
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
pinch of dried oregano
- To make the dip, place the feta, cream or soft cheese and yogurt or quark in a blender and whizz until smooth. Season to taste (you might not need any salt since the feta is salty) then spoon into a serving dish.
- To make the salsa, mix the cucumber with the tomatoes, olives, red onion, dill, crumbled feta, vinegar and oregano. Season to taste. Serve on top of the dip or alongside in either a large dish or as individual servings.
WLS PORTION: ½
V suitable for Vegetarians
CALORIES PER PORTION: 93
PROTEIN: 8.9 g
CARBOHYDRATE: 2.9 g
FAT: 4.8 g
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