Spanish(esque?) Zucchini Leek Dip (Vegetarian)

Well, I was driving to work the other day, and some dude on the radio was saying something to this effect:

“It’s based on a common Spanish dish. You use pureed zucchini, leeks, cilantro … it also has manchego and red pepper flakes. It’s a dip. It’s my signature dish. But I can’t tell you the recipe, I’d have to kill you. No really, I’ll never share the recipe.”

So I thought to myself, pureed zucchini, leek, cilantro and manchego? And it’s a dip? And it’s supposed to taste a little Spanish? I can do it.

(All due respect, it really was Spain.)

Now, having lived in Spain, I can say that I have no idea about any common Spanish dishes involving pureed zucchini, however, I did live in Northern Spain, and things are different there. In fact, there is a more-than-negligible contingent of people who do not consider Spain to have legitimate sovereignty over them. Hence, if you travel through, say, Galicia, you’re bound to see a lot of graffiti that says “This is not Spain,” “No es España,” or “Nom e Espanha” (the Gallego equivalent thereof).

In any case, what I came up with was a totally random invention, I have no idea if it even remotely resembles any real Spanish dishes (though I fancy it does taste a little Spanish, mostly owing to the leek & manchego). I also have no idea if it remotely approximates the actual dish that the radio dude was talking about. What I do know is that it passed the J approval test, and was an interesting and tasty dip, albeit rather rich. I think it would be great for parties or as a tapa or something. Also, I will continue to experiment with it, so please check back from time to time for modifications to the current recipe if you’re interested.

Spanish-Esque Zucchini Leek Dip

1 zucchini
1 carefully cleaned leek
2 – 3 large cloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
Handful of cilantro (~1/4 cup)
½ cup shredded manchego cheese
2 tbsp cream cheese
2 tbsp vegetable stock (if desired)
Red pepper flakes

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Oil a roasting pan, baking pan, or iron skillet. Add the zucchini, leek and garlic and toss a bit so they are coated with oil. Sprinkle a tiny bit of salt. Cover with aluminum foil and roast for ~20 – 25 minutes.

Once the veggies are roasted, transfer them to a food processor and puree until they are … um, pureed. At this point you may add the cheeses, cilantro, salt and red pepper flakes. I recommend adding them in portions and tasting frequently until you get to the desired flavor & consistency. If it becomes too dry, that would be the time to add the soup stock.