This Lentil Dip recipe is a hearty, nutritious, and delicious dip recipe that’s easy to make and perfect for your New Year’s Eve party!
2016. What a year, eh? I’m still reeling from the loss of one of my favorite actors, Alan Rickman (among MANY other music and film icons), and now the fiery, whip smart, sassy and empowering Carrie Fisher. I woke up this morning with one thought: “Okay. 2017. Time to be the Princess AND the General.”
More on that later. First, we have to wrap up the remaining days of 2016!
My family usually hosts a New Year’s Day pajama party open house. It’s a great way to kick off the new year with a warm house full of fun friends, laughter, smiles, and yummy food and drinks. I make firecrackers with fun positive printables inside to start the year off on a healthy, happy note.
This year, we’re keeping it simple and small. It might just be us; it might just be us and a couple of friends. There will definitely be a viewing of the season premiere of Sherlock. Now THAT is a great way to kick off the new year! I love that show! Do you watch it?
New Year’s Eve Traditions
[Tweet “In Italy, lentils are served after midnight on #NewYearsEve to represent luck, prosperity.”]
A big feast is always part of our New Year’s Day pajama party open house. One of the things I love most about food as I travel is learning about the role food plays in different cultures. Here are a few fun food facts I found about New Year’s Eve food traditions:
- In the Philippines, the favorite lechon (roast pig) is served along with noodles.
- Southerners in the US traditionally serve black eyed peas along with collard greens to symbolize money.
- In Japan, a New Year’s Eve menu usually includes soba noodles to represent long life.
- In Italy, lentils are served after midnight on New Year’s Eve to represent luck and prosperity.
Since my Italian friends like to joke that I must have Italian blood in me due to the amount of Italian food I cook and consume (SO good! I could eat Italian food all day, every day!), of course I love serving lentils!
Good Luck Lentil Dip
For our New Year’s Day festivities in the past, I’ve enjoyed serving this Good Luck Lentil Dip. My recipe is adapted from a bruschetta lentil dip recipe from The Food Charlatan. It’s so simple, yet full of textures and flavors that blend beautifully together. This hearty dip is absolutely delicious to serve along with tortilla chips, crackers, or slices of baguette.
- 8 oz uncooked lentils
- 5 or 6 roma tomatoes OR 1-1/2 cups cherry tomatoes diced
- 8 large fresh basil leaves finely chopped
- 1 large garlic clove finely minced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 cup crumbled feta
- In a large stockpot, bring about 8 cups of water to a boil.
- Rinse and drain your dry lentils in a colander, then add to the boiling water.
- Cover the pot and lower heat to medium, allowing the lentils to cook until they are softened (but not mushy!), which takes about 20-25 minutes. Drain the cooked lentils into a large bowl and allow to cool slightly at room temperature, then refrigerate until chilled.
- Meanwhile, in a separate large bowl, add diced tomatoes, basil leaves, and minced garlic.
- Add the salt, pepper, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, lemon juice, lemon zest, and oregano. Stir gently with a wooden spoon so the flavors and ingredients blend well.
- Remove the chilled lentils from the refrigerator and add to the bowl. Add the crumbled feta and gently stir again, until ingredients are evenly distributed throughout.
- Refrigerate for at least an hour; you can make this the night before and refrigerate overnight.
- Serve with crackers, tortilla chips, or baguette slices.
What about you? What are your New Year’s Eve and/or New Year’s Day traditions? Any way you choose to celebrate, I wish you all a very safe, warm, delicious, BLISSful New Year!