Habanero Pepita Dip
Habanero Pepita Dip- a spicy dip made from toasted pumpkin seeds, tomatoes, and habanero peppers. Only takes 15 minutes to make!
Oh hi. Did you guys notice anything different around here?
No, I didn’t get a haircut…I got a new site design!
I’ve been working behind the scenes with Lindsay from Purr Designs over the past couple of months to give the blog a little facelift and I am so excited to finally reveal it to you. My goal was to have a clean, minimalist look that focuses mainly on the content while also allowing for easy navigation and I think the new site accomplishes that perfectly. I have to give major props to Lindsay for putting up with me because I’m a total control freak and asked her to change things a bajillion times. But she was super patient with me and I am in love with what an amazing job she did. I can’t recommend her enough.
Of course I would love to hear your feedback! Please let me know if you have trouble with anything.
Now let’s talk dip. Some of you might remember when I posted about our hike Alamere Falls in Point Reyes a few months ago. Well we didn’t get back until late that evening so rather than showering and getting dressed-up for dinner, we wanted something casual where we could relax and grab a beer. We ended-up eating at this little hole-in-the-wall Mexican restaurant in Sonoma County called El Molino Central.
The setting isn’t exactly surrounded by vineyards but it still has a certain charm. You have to walk through the kitchen to get to the small seating area in the back which is decorated with colorful string lights and bright red chairs. I wasn’t sure what to expect from the food but it turned out to be incredible.
We started with this Habanero-Pepita Dip and I instantly knew I had to recreate it. It was listed on the menu as Sikil P’ak which, upon further research, I discovered originates from the Yucután peninsula of Mexico. It’s made from a simple combination of toasted pumpkin seeds and vegetables, although you would never guess that by it’s creamy texture.
The traditional recipe calls for roasting the vegetables but I wasn’t able to find fresh habanero peppers so I kept things simple by using habanero sauce.
If you’re new to habanero peppers, they are pretty high on the spice scale so they might not be the best option of you don’t like really spicy food. However you can always substitute poblano or jalapeno peppers for a milder option. You’ll find instructions in the notes on how to pan-roast the fresh peppers in the same skillet you used to toast the pepitas.
Habanero Pepita Dip
Yield: 3 cups or 15 servings
Prep Time: 10
Cook Time: 5
Total Time: 15
- 2 cups pepitas (shelled pumpkin seeds)
- 4 roma tomatoes, diced (or a 15 ounce can diced fire roasted tomatoes)
- 1/4 cup cilantro
- 1/4 cup chives
- 1 garlic clove
- juice of 2 limes
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1-2 teaspoons habanero sauce*
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1/3 cup water
- smoked paprika for topping
- In a large skillet over medium heat, toast the pepitas until light golden brown and fragrant, for about 3-5 minutes. They will make a popping sound as they toast. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
- Transfer the toasted pepitas to a blender along with 4 diced roma tomatoes (or can of tomatoes with juices), 1/4 cup cilantro, 1/4 cup chives,garlic, juice of 2 limes, 2 teaspoons salt, 1 teaspoon (or more) habanero sauce, 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil and 1/3 cup water. Blend on high until smooth, scraping the sides down every so often. As more water as needed until desired texture is achieved.
- Scoop the dip out into a bowl for serving and drizzle a teaspoon of olive oil on top. Finish with a pinch of pepitas and smoked paprika, serve with tortilla chips, and enjoy!
*1 teaspoon yields a mild-to-medium level of heat. You can less for a mild spice or 1 tablespoon for medium-to-hot spice.
If you are able to find fresh peppers, you can use one pepper (habanero for spicy or poblano/jalapeno for mild spice) in place of the hot sauce. Toast it in the skillet over medium heat, alternating sides, for about 5 minutes until the outside is light golden brown. Allow it to cool then remove the core and the seeds before adding it to the blender with the other ingredients.