This black bean dip is spicy, flavorful, and perfect for a big group. The chipotles add a smoky note, and all the flavors meld together well. I made a half-recipe and it was plenty for our group of 9 (which included 2 kids), but as part of a meal rather than as a separate snack. I listed the full recipe below in case you're cooking for a crowd or want to serve this on its own. My mom and I included this dip as part of our 4th of July picnic, which was Mexican themed and lots of fun. Coming up later this week are our awesome tacos from that same meal--carnitas for meat-eaters and braised greens for veggies/everyone.
Spicy Chipotle Bean Dip (from Fine Cooking)
2 T olive oil
2 medium tomatoes, cored and cut into medium dice
2 tsp. kosher salt
1 large yellow onion, finely diced
3 large cloves garlic, minced
1 T chili powder
2 15-1/2 oz. cans black beans, rinsed and drained well
2 canned chipotles en adobo, minced (about 1 T)
3 T adobo sauce from the canned chipotles
3 T cider vinegar
1-1/2 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels (no need to thaw)
1-1/2 cups (6 oz.) grated sharp cheddar cheese
1-1/2 cups (6 oz.) grated Monterey Jack cheese
3/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Freshly ground black pepper
Tortilla chips for serving
1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and spray a 1 1/2 quart baking dish with oil and place on a baking sheet lined with oil.
2. Put the tomatoes into a colander, sprinkle with 1 tsp salt, and set aside.
3. Heat 2 T olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Reduce heat to medium and add the onion and 1 tsp salt. Cooking, stirring often, until soft and translucent, about 4-6 minutes. Add garlic and chili powder and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add half the black beans, the chipotles and adobo sauce, and 3/4 cup water. Bring to a boil. Cook until liquid reduces by half, 2-3 minutes.
4. Transfer bean mixture to a food processor, add the vinegar, and process until smooth. Or, transfer to a large bowl, add vinegar, and mash well with a potato masher. Let cool a few minutes, then add the reserved beans, the tomatoes, corn, half of each type of cheese, and 1/2 cup cilantro. Mix well and season to taste with salt and pepper.
5. Transfer bean dip to the baking dish and sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Bake until the cheese melts and browns around the edges, about 15 minutes. Sprinkle on the remaining cilantro and serve with tortilla chips for dipping.