Ahoy dips!

Ahoy dips!

Dips are key to making snacks flavourful and kicking it up a notch, writes Anuja Pandey

Savoury, sweet or spicy, they come in all flavours so take a dip and add flavour or texture to your food. Chips and dips are the perfect party snack as when it comes to hosting a party, you can never have too much dip. Dips are used with chips, tortillas, dumplings, crudités, falafel, pita breads or anything. Nothing brings families together like good food. And dips enhance the choices and variety on the table. A hummus platter is an undeniably hit snack amongst people especially while watching a tournament or game on television. The colourful platter is not just a feast to the  eyes but even appeasing to the taste buds and more so gratifying to the mind. The fresh flavourful dips made out of veggies or fruits or blends of olive oil not only bring fun and flavour to your taste buds but also to the table as you have meals with family and friends. 

The tradition of dips is a part of many cultures and hence very many kinds of dips are adding variety to our plates. The growing demand for convenience while adding variety, a multi-sensorial experience coupled with a surprise factor is the reason for this growing food trend and global market for artisanal gourmet dips. The blurring lines between a snack and a meal is also a factor that contributes to this growing trend. Dips are a magnificent way to use many seeds or veggies that go in the preparation of a dip. With the coming back of the age-old trend of dips from grandma’s kitchen, you can make anything interesting. 

As Indians, we have grown up eating chutney, marmalades, spreads, as these are a part of our household food. There was a time a few years ago when these dips were almost losing their significance but hand-crafted gourmet dips have given these age-old grandmom’s recipes a revival. Gourmet dips are a major part of the Middle East and European culture that have made a big place today in the Indian market clubbed with our Indian desi flavours and herbal mixes as well, refashioned to suit our modern taste palate. 

Artisan dip mixes, in unison with various rubs, flavoured salts and herb and spice blends, make a perfect serve for any picnic, barbecue, and also make a great gifting option for wellness freaks. For those of us who don’t like our crudités or cut vegetables and fruits, dips add a healthy flavourful option. Vegans can get a burst of protein with the dips that have no milk content. There is a smorgasbord of hand-crafted and preservative-free dips in the market today.

Throwing a house party has never been easier what with some lip-smacking hummus or Baba Ghanoush, a tahini or guacamole, making the perfect accompaniment for pita breads and gourmet breads. If you like creamy dips but are off cheese, then pick an artichoke and spinach dip or prepare a fresh roasted beet and walnut dip for yourself. If you are dieting then don’t starve, just pick the right dips, as nobody needs to compromise on taste for a healthy lifestyle anymore. In today’s times, there is a dip for everyone, whether you eat it with a salad or fruits, seeds or nuts, chips or spread it over your breads. If you are on a fast then buckwheat crepes with some yummy fruit-based marmalade or a dip or chutney that is yoghurt-based makes it so wonderful. 

The toasted nori mayonnaise is another fabulous one to have on crackers and smoked fish. 

If gourmet dips ain’t yet a part of your dining table then welcome it and enjoy the texture and taste of the various ingredients in it for an experience. 

(The author is a lifestyle coach & social media influencer.)