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Creamy Pistachio Dip

By 11:41 AM , , ,

I never really noticed how annoying it is to shell pistachios - or time consuming for that matter.  That is until, I was shelling pistachios to equal 1 1/2 cups and not just shelling as I pop them into my mouth.  But if you love pistachios, this dip is so worth the time that it takes to remove the shells.  Or you can just be smarter than me and pay attention when you are shopping and buy pistachios with the shells already removed!

And if you don't particularly love pistachios or you haven't had them, you should still make this dip from Food & Wine.  It really is that good.

This kind of reminds me of a cheese ball, but in dip form and lighter.  It is yet another wonderful recipe from Food & Wine - they really never disappoint me.

The pistachios impart a somewhat sweet nuttiness, that is balance beautifully by the garlic, shallot, parsley and tarragon.  The herbs give the dip a unique flavor, but aren't overpowering.  This was a huge hit with everyone that tasted it.

A few notes:
- Being not a big parsley fan (to put it nicely) I decreased the amount of parsley from 1/4 to 1/8 of a cup.
- The original recipe calls for 1 cup of mayo, I used 1/3 cup of Duke's Light mayo (Duke's to satisfy The Husband and Light for my benefit ;) ).

Creamy Pistachio Dip
1 1/2 cups raw, unsalted shelled pistachios (7 ounces)
1 large shallot, minced
1/4 cup Champagne vinegar or white wine vinegar
1/3 cup mayonnaise (light or regular)
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 large garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 cups crème fraîche
1/4 cup minced flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons minced tarragon
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Preheat the oven to 350°. Spread the pistachios on a large rimmed baking sheet and toast for 8 minutes. Let cool. Transfer the pistachios to a food processor and pulse until coarsely ground.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, soak the shallot in the vinegar for 10 minutes. In a large bowl, whisk the mayonnaise with the lemon juice and garlic. Gradually whisk in the olive oil until thickened.

Drain the shallots and stir them into the mayonnaise along with the crème fraîche, parsley and tarragon. Stir in the ground pistachios and season with salt and pepper.

Make Ahead: The dip can be refrigerated overnight!

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