For my birthday I made a few tried and tested party foods. Dips are never a miss at parties – finger foods are not only easy to make but serve a great purpose; you can hold your drink in one hand and eat with the other, all the while making conversation – this is efficiency people :). For this special night I made a simple 4 ingredient hummus dip and a charred eggplant dip (somewhat like a baba ganoush).
For the end of the night nothing works better than the famous ‘trashy truffle’. This particular dessert, inspired by a Paula Dean recipe for cookie dough truffles, was aptly named by my sister. I tweaked the recipe a little and came up with sweet little pieces of chocolately drizzled trashy joy, with a slight biscuity crunch. Yum, I love parties.
4 ingredient hummus
400g chickpeas, drained
1 tbsp tahini paste
juice from 1 small lemon
extra-virgin olive oil 2-3 tbsp (plus more for finishing)
Place chickpeas, tahini and lemon juice in food processor and blend. While blending drizzle in olive oil until mixture resembles smooth, creamy paste. If too thick, add a little water to thin out. Season with sea salt and give a final mix. Place into bowl and finish with a little more olive oil and a touch salt.
charred eggplant dip
1 large eggplant
1/4 red onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup greek/full fat yoghurt
sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
extra-virgin olive oil, to finish
First char the eggplant on the bbq (as I have done) or grill. Let cool and remove most of the blackened bits (keeping a little is fine and imparts a smoky flavour). Next, chop up the softened eggplant (it falls apart easily), mix in onions, add salt and fold through the yoghurt (here I didn't over-mix as I like the look and taste of uneven layers of yoghurt and eggplant). Finish with fresh pepper and a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil.
(slightly adapted from Paula Deen)
makes about 5 dozen truffles
1/2 cup organic butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups organic plain flour
1 can condensed milk
1/2 cup finely chopped biscuits (I used something like a graham cracker but use anything you fancy)
150g milk chocolate, melted
In a large mixing bowl, cream butter, sugar and vanilla. Gradually mix in flour and add condensed milk. Mix in biscuit crumbs and shape dough into 1 inch balls (dip fingers in flour to make it easier to roll). Place on waxed/baking paper and chill in fridge for an hour.
Melt chocolate in a double boiler on low-heat. Take out tray of truffles and drizzle with melted chocolate – I dipped some whole in the chocolate and kept some simply drizzled – it’s up to you!