Give your next platter a vibrant burst of bright colour with this Egyptian beetroot dip. It’s delicious slathered on warm Turkish bread or scooped up with raw vegetables.
Prep: 10 mins | Cook: 45-60 mins | Serves: 6
Most of us grew up with canned slices of wilted beetroot that made a soggy mess of our salad sandwiches. But now, beetroots are the superfood of our vegetable baskets. These red beauties have gained momentum as a functional food with health-promoting and disease-preventing properties. In fact, beetroots are rich in several bioactive compounds, most notably inorganic nitrates, which offer numerous health benefits for the body.
Studies show that a diet high in nitrate-rich beetroots can lower blood pressure, improve blood flow and enhance endurance exercise performance. Our body converts these dietary nitrates into nitric oxide, an essential chemical messenger that sends signals to the muscles around your artery walls telling them to relax. As a result, your blood vessels dilate, and blood pressure declines.
Beetroot has also shown promising therapeutic potential in a range of pathologies associated with chronic inflammation and oxidative stress, including type 2 diabetes, liver disease, and dementia. These benefits are due to the presence of betalains, a group of pigments that possess potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. These compounds are also responsible for the vegetable’s vibrant red-violet colour.
Beetroot dips are typically thickened with yoghurt or cream cheese. However, we’ve substituted these dairy products with Almo Crème, which adds a subtle nutty flavour that balances the sweet beetroots. Whip up a batch to share at your next festive feast or spread it over toast with your favourite toppings for a healthy lunch. We love sliced avocado and red onion, sprinkled with pumpkin seeds and micro herbs.
Tip: Choose small to medium-sized beetroots, unbruised with fresh, green leaves and firm, smooth roots. Larger beets tend to be less flavoursome and quite tough.