Wolf was down in California finishing off Triathalon season over the weekend and I was back at the ranch prepping for the long week ahead. Food-wise, it was a hodge-podge, though I did cook Friday night after living off of enchilada casserole all week. It felt good to get back in the kitchen on Saturday morning and do something that didn’t involve sitting in front of a computer. Kneading dough for pita bread and running some errands did me some good. But then that pita really needed something to go along with. Hummus? Mmm, ok, but maybe something else?
This month’s ingredient for Tasting Jerusalem is pomegranate molasses, but every recipe in the book that’s been catching my eye lately involves date syrup, which I haven’t been able to track down. So with a batch of roasted beets in the fridge — I was in prep mode last weekend, too — I made this gorgeous magenta dip. Pureed beets doesn’t sound….delicious, beet dip just sounds weird, but what it is, is a delicious third option as part of a mezze plate along with hummus and mujammara, which also uses pomegranate molasses.
It’s not far off from being a beet pesto, and it’s just as simple. Beets, garlic, chile, yogurt, olive oil, syrup and za’atar go into a food processor and 10-12 pulses later, you’ve got your third Musketeer. The recipe in the book calls for date syrup, the adaptation in Food and Wine calls for maple and I’ve subbed in pomegranate molasses not only for the sweetness, but a little extra tang.
If you’re interested in cooking along, Tasting Jerusalem is a virtual cooking community exploring the vibrant flavors and cuisine of the Middle East through the lens of “Jerusalem: A Cookbook” by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi published by Ten Speed Press. You can follow along and cook with us by subscribing to omgyummy.com, following the hashtag #TastingJrslm on Twitter and Instagram, liking the Facebook page, joining the Google+ Community and finally checking out all of the groups’ dishes on Pinterest.