Monday 7 February 2011

Queso dip, enchiladas and food processor

It's good bye to my old cracked and cranky food processor and hello to a shiny bright new one! This was a birthday present from my parents and siblings. I suspect it may take a little time to adjust. My old food processor only had one blade so the idea of a whole selection of blades and gadgets is quite overwhelming but exciting too!

The new food processor has something for everyone. Fun cooking for me, good food for E, and Sylvia and Zinc loved the box. I wasn't able to take a photo of Zinc lying in the box and playing with Sylvia's new strings of beads (bought from the op shop on the weekend) but it was priceless to watch. We are glad to see Sylvia learning to stay away from Zinc's playful claws.

Meanwhile, I gave the new food processor a burl with a batch of Sarah's Queso Dip. It is a vegan cheeze dip that requires soaking and blending raw cashews. I have tried such dips with my old food processor and just got a gritty watery mess. Finally I understand why people use raw cashews in vegan cheeze. With my new toy, they made a creamy rich base for the dip. There is no looking back now!

E and I loved the dip. I served it with lots of vegies and it was delicious. The dip is quite light on the calories but high in flavour. I omitted a lot of the fiery bite because I don't like much chilli. Then I added some white miso and nutritional yeast flakes to give a more cheesy taste. Sylvia was curious but not impressed. She has decided that "dip" means her favourite pink beetroot, cashew and parmesan dip. Nothing else will do!

I loved the cheese dip so much that I was keen to experiment. I tried it in some enchiladas which were good but not great. I think my mistake was to bake them with the tomato sauce on them. If I made them again I would serve them with tomato salsa on the side. However I am not sure what I would put on top. I have written out the recipe below but it is still work in progress.

You can see below a picture of the spread at my mum's that we had for my birthday lunch. I was inspired by her bean and corn enchiladas. You can see that she served them with lots of side dishes - including tacos, Mexican rice and tortilla chip salad.

I am curious to try this dip in other ways. I loved Sarah's Games Day Chilli Buffet and her photos of how her friends served their dip in different ways. I want to try spreading it on puff pastry, rolling it up and baking it (inspiration for this to be posted soon), stirring it into a tofu scrambles (like this one), or using it to top nachos. However, the rest of this batch of queso dip was great on rice crackers. Sometimes simple is best!

Previously on Green Gourmet Giraffe:
This time last year: Pizza for the Working Woman
This time two years ago: Birthday treats, heat and intrigue
This time three years ago: Perfect Purple Potato Bread

Alicia's Vegan Queso Dip

from Vegan Epicurean via the Ordinary Vegetarian
Makes approximately 7½ x ½ cup servings

1/2 cup raw cashews, (soaked for at least 1 hour)
1/2 cup oatmeal, ground into flour (I used rolled oats and forgot to grind it)
1, 1/2 cups water
2 teaspoon onion flakes, dried
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 clove garlic, peeled
400g (14oz) tin of diced tomatoes
1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes
1 tablespoon white miso
1 teaspoon sweet Hungarian paprika
1 teaspoon sea salt flakes, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon chilli powder

Drain the cashews and blend in the food processor (or blender) with oats, water, onion flakes, turmeric, diced tomatoes and garlic. Puree until the mixture is smooth. (It will be quite thin but will thicken with heating.) Pour into a medium saucepan and add sweet and smoked paprika, salt and chilli powder. Check seasoning and adjust to taste. Gently heat, stirring frequently, until mixture has thickened. It will thicken more as it cools so it may need a little liquid to thin it if you reheat it. Keep in the fridge. Mine lasted 4 days.

Cheezy bean and corn enchiladas - work in progress
serves 4

1, 1/2 cups queso sauce (or any cheese sauce)
400g tin kidney beans, rinsed and drained
400g tin corn, rinsed and drained
1 -2 spring onions, finely sliced
1/2 large red capsicum, finely chopped
9 small corn tortillas
oil spray

Mix 1 cup of queso sauce, kidney beans, corn, spring onions and red capsicum. Heat gently in the microwave or a saucepan. Heat a non stick frypan and spray with oil. Warm tortillas in frypan, one at a time, spraying the frypan with more oil as needed. Once each tortilla is warm, spoon a couple of dessertspoons into the middle and roll up, then transfer to a greased rectangular lasagna dish. Spray oil on tops of quesos. Bake for about 20-30 minutes at about 200 C. I think I might try spreading a bit more queso on the tortillas towards the end of baking but am not sure. Serve with salsa of chopped tomatoes, spring onions, chilli paste, ground cumin, smoked paprika, lemon juice and avocado.

On the stereo:
Love: The Beatles


  1. Ahhh, the first thing I was going to say was "Johanna, nut butter nut butters!", and then I kept reading and you were there already (in a manner of speaking). Seeing how much I loved my macadamia vegan cheeze, I have GOT to try this. And I mean that in the really, really have to, not the forgetting about it way... :P

  2. Oh cute! Cat in a box! That spread looks great, also.

  3. oooh new kitchen gadents = exciting!!!!

  4. Congratulations on your new gift! I was the same and used mine until it was quite cracked and looked a bit dangerous! :P

  5. Congrats on the new food processor! Some day I will be able to afford one nicer than the $30 gizmo I got from Walmart years ago. But then again, it's served me pretty well. Still, that one looks really nice!

  6. thanks Hannah - I ate almost all the veg in the top photo because the cheeze dip made it taste so good - highly recommend it! Keep thinking of all the recipes I have avoided because my food processor would not do much with it

    Thanks Lexi - cat in a box always cute and a great way to keep sylvia amused :-)

    thanks Lisa - can never have too many gadgets in the kitchen

    Thanks Lorraine - it was hard to get rid of mine because it still worked but had been dropped and put on a hot plate and had all sorts of scars that made me too embarrasse to give it away

    Thanks Sarah - my old food processor only cost about $30 and gave years of faithful service but the new one makes life much easier

  7. The food processor is so pretty! And you're already doing delicious things with it, I see. That queso dip sounds amazing. I love that it's vegan.

  8. Oh what fun you will have with your new processor - although I always get attached (not literally!) to my kitchen gadgets and seeing them go can sometimes be sad. Just think of all the goodies you can create with more than one blade though ;0)

  9. I had never had a food processor until I bought one a month or so back. It is awesome and I have used it quite a few times!

  10. Thanks Joanne - I love how shiny and clean it is because my old one had so many battle scars

    Thanks Chele - yes I get attached to my gadgets but I do need to explore a few more blades - though I suspect I will still use the standard one most

    Thanks Cynthia - a food processor makes a world of difference - glad you are enjoying yours

  11. Happy belated birthday Johanna!

    I am addicted to my food processor!

  12. Was traveling and am just now catching up on blog posts from the last couple of weeks. Glad you tried this queso dip and liked it! I recently made a batch that I changed up and added nutritional yeast to and really loved it. The miso sounds like a great addition, too!

  13. Yay for new food processors! I think I couldn't live without mine. ;) And that dip does look fantastic--I saw it a while ago on Alicia's blog and thought I'd like to try it, but of course time slipped away. . . this is a good reminder.

  14. I have yet to try out queso dip but really want to! Happy to hear that you liked it as it makes me want to try it more. Hurray for new food processors! I thought mine broke (the motor died while I was making something), but it turns out it just overheated. I was sad it didn't break haha because I really don't like it.


Thanks for dropping by. I love hearing from you. Please share your thoughts and questions. Annoyingly the spammers are bombarding me so I have turned on the pesky captcha code (refresh to find an easy one if you don't like the first one)