I don’t know about you, but the longer I live, the more I learn about how to enjoy life. Enjoyment is actually difficult to pull off, I’ve found. It means you have to live in the present, ignoring worry about the past or nagging thoughts of the future. It also requires overlooking some of the present conditions that might not be ideal (my rumbling stomach, the dog barking, that spot on my shirt…).
Have you found enjoyment becomes easier with age? It certainly has for me: sweet friendships with gentle-hearted friends, my nephew gleefully applauding for himself after singing his A, B, C’s, the taste of Indiana strawberries or fresh basil from the garden, kind words from a stranger…the less entitled I feel to good things, the more good things surprise me.
Like this tomato almond dip, a new take on one of our old favorites that we adapted from a friend. It is quick to put together (5 minutes, excluding cleanup), but it is so so tasty. We’ve been serving it a lot lately for summer meals — as an appetizer for a few meals dear friends, part of summer picnic on the porch with my in-laws — and it’s been a hit every time. We simplified from the original version to use just 5 ingredients, while keeping the same basic taste. Serving it with grilled bread adds a beautiful touch (thanks to Alex for the brilliant idea), but you can serve it with anything you desire – bread, crackers, veggies, etc. We enjoy it not only for the taste, but the simplicity and easy assembly, and the suitability for a wide range of diets (gluten-free [sans bread], dairy-free, vegetarian, vegan).
Here’s to taking the time to enjoy each moment, this summer and beyond!
- ¾ cup roasted almonds
- 15-ounce can fire roasted tomatoes
- 1 clove garlic
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ cup olive oil
- In the bowl of a food processor, combine all ingredients except the olive oil, and process until the nuts are finely ground.
- Scrape down the bowl. With the processor running, add ¼ cup olive oil in a steady stream until a paste forms. Serve with crackers or bread.
- 1 baguette
- Olive oil
- Slice the baguette into slices. Brush olive oil onto each side of the bread.
- In a grill pan or on a grill, toast each bread slice over medium high heat until browned, a few minutes per side.