Sitting in my kitchen the other day I was thinking of how to put a twist on old classic recipes (as I often do)… I was thinking of staple “Americana” party food.  Mexican 7-Layer dip was on the list.  Now I’ve heard of people making a greek version with hummus and etc… but what about an Italian version?  It got my wheels turning and when it was finished, I love it!  I brought it to a party and the bowl was practically licked clean!  It’s a festive looking dish, but it’s definitely going on my year-round roster.  I hope you enjoy!

Italian Layer Dip

Serves 4-6 (easily double for a larger party)

Bean layer:

2 15oz. cans of white beans, drained and rinsed

1/2 tsp. dried oregano

1 tsp -1 tbsp. olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

-with your hands or potato masher, combine the ingredients and smash beans until they are re-fried beans consistency.  Add olive oil as necessary to thin.

Olive layer:

5 oz. black olives chopped

Roasted Red Bell Peppers layer:

2 red bell peppers, roasted, cooled, peeled, and chopped

Artichoke layer:

16 oz. of marinated artichokes, rinsed and chopped

Pesto layer:

1 bunch of basil (about 30 leaves)

1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted

2 cloves garlic

1/4 tsp. salt

a couple grinds of fresh black pepper

-Puree in a food processor (you can also sub out your favorite store bought pesto)

Tomato layer:

2 large roma tomatoes, diced and seeds discarded

1 tsp sugar

3 tsp. balsamic vinegar

-toss together in a bowl.

Garnish:

a few leaves of basil, thinly sliced

What you’ll do:

Assemble in serving bowl (I like using clear so guests can see the layers).  Apply the layers in order above starting with the bean spread and ending with the basil leaves.  Served chilled.

*You can easily make all the layers the day before and assemble the day of your event

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