Italian Chickpea Spread

This easy to make hummus is from Short-Cut Vegan: Great Taste in No Time, on page 49.

If you are not a tahini fan (I am not a fan of it), hummus can be a disappointment. This has great flavor and pulls together in a matter of minutes, with a wonderful change in what you expect. Great on sandwiches too!

Italian Chickpea Spread

Ingredients:

  • 15 ounce can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), organic, ¼ cup liquid reserved
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp Italian herb seasoning blend
  • ½ tsp garlic, minced (1 clove)
  • Salt to taste

Directions:

Add everything but salt to a high-speed blender, such as a Vita-Mix. Process on high until creamy (a shy minute) tamping as needed. Season to taste with salt.

Before serving drizzle a little more oil on top and sprinkle more herbs on top. Store tightly covered in the refrigerator.

~Sarah

Sweet Potato Hummus

This IS the best hummus I have ever had – made by me or commercially made. Is it making the tahini fresh? The sweetness of slow cooked yams? I don’t know but I will just say it is spectacular. Does having a Vitamix blender help? Yes, considerably. The hummus is light, nearly fluffy when done. And silky smooth. It is the worth effort to make everything from scratch although taking the shortcut and using canned beans is fine to do.

Last week when I had free time I baked a box of sweet potatoes I had bought at Costco (a real bargain). Then after letting them cool I peeled and mashed them. I froze them in 2 cup bags (spread flat in a quart freezer bag). By doing this ahead of time I have ready to use potatoes – which thaw quickly. As for the beans, I cook them in my slow cooker.

Raw Tahini

Ingredients:

Directions:

Add the oil and sesame seeds to a high power blender (Vitamix). Start on Variable 1, turn to 10 and then to High. Using the tamper, push down until smooth, about 1 minute. The mixture will be very thick, unlike commercial tahini.

Store tightly sealed in the refrigerator.

Sweet Potato Hummus

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups mashed sweet potatoes, cooled
  • 1½ cups cooked garbanzo beans or 15 to 16 ounce can, drained and rinsed
  • ¼ cup raw tahini
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice (1 large lemon), strained
  • 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp garlic, minced (2 cloves)
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp sea salt

Directions:

Add everything to a high power blender (Vitamix). Start on Variable 1, turn to 10 and then to High. Using the tamper, push down until smooth, about 1 to 2 minutes. Taste for seasoning, add more salt if desired.

Store tightly sealed in the refrigerator.

Note - can be made in a food processor, process until smooth.

~Sarah

Creamy Silky Hummus (and our new Vitamix)

Kirk talked me into it recently. A Vitamix 5200 blender. It was hard for me to get past the price tag (even on a great deal at Costco) – if you have ever watched a demo of one you know how pricey they are. But I had noticed something over and over when reading other blogs – no one says anything negative. They love theirs and use it all the time. Then at VegFest last weekend I counted at least 20 of them being used by vendors to prepare the food being served. That said a lot. No other brand, just Vitamix. Kirk had been increasingly frustrated by our high-speed blender. He wanted a silky smooth frappe, not ones with icy chunks. He had never been able to reach that state, no matter what he tried. He kept bugging me that maybe we should get a Vitamix but it seemed so over the top for just frappes – after all, how many frappes do you have to make to justify the cost of the machine? But then the demo guy was at Costco putting on a show (as they often do) and I actually got sucked in and watched it. He was a good rep, probably the best I have seen. He enjoyed what he did and it showed. He took the time to make a couple of recipes that were catered more to us. What cinched the deal was the baby food. I got frustrated when Walker was a baby and gave up making it because I couldn’t get it smooth enough, even when pushing it through a wire mesh sieve (and it took so long!). So watching him blend spinach, carrots, apples and whatnot in 30 seconds and producing a ready to eat SMOOTH baby food that tasted amazing. It was fresh and vibrant. Walker sucked down the entire cup he was given and was crabbing for more after. Personally I think jarred baby food is pretty sad taste wise, I would have eaten this happily.

After that I was in and realized the blender really could do the things it promised. So the blender with a 64 ounce wet container  and an additional dry container (for making flours) fell in the cart.

So we came home and got to work. Or should I say Kirk did! He doesn’t get to be in the kitchen much but is a talented cook in his own right. I let him in and he has played with the blender every night making us so many things! That and our morning frappes (when you think about it, if went to Starbucks every morning we would spend $10 for 2 drinks. Maybe we will pay for the machine sooner than we thought….) Did I mention the frappes are smoother than any drink I have had in a coffee shop? No ice left. Smooth as a milkshake.

Kirk adapted the hummus recipe out of the official cookbook, Whole Food Recipes, on page 102. Since I am trying to wean us off canned beans I measured the canned items so we can go back and use home cooked beans (using the slow cooker method). I am not embellishing this – it was the silkiest and smoothest hummus I have ever had. Minus the tinny lemon flavor and preservatives that nearly all commercial brands have.

But DO use organic canned beans if using canned. Otherwise you may well be consuming preservatives in the cooking liquid it is packed in (since part of the liquid is used in preparing).

Hummus

Ingredients:

  • 2 15 ounce cans organic garbanzo beans (chickpeas), one drained, one with liquid or 3 cups cooked garbanzo beans + ¾ cup cooking liquid
  • ¼ cup raw sesame seeds
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil + more for drizzling on top
  • 2 lemons, juiced (¼ cup)
  • ½ tsp garlic or 1 clove, peeled
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp sea salt, or to taste
  • ground paprika for topping

Directions:

Add the beans, bean liquid, sesame seeds, oil, lemon juice and cumin into the Vitamix container (wet one) and secure the lid.

Select variable 1.

Turn machine on and quickly increase speed to Variable 10, then to high.

Blend for 1 minute, using the tamper to press the ingredients into the blades.

Season to taste with the salt, scrape into a serving bowl.

Drizzle more olive oil on top and sprinkle lightly with paprika. Serve with chips, fresh veggies, spread on sammies……

Store tightly covered in the refrigerator.

- This can be prepared in a food processor but it won’t be as smooth.

~Sarah

PS: So many more recipes coming using the Vitamix - Kirk has been SO busy!

Yogurt Hummus

Love hummus? Not a huge fan of tahini though? I am not one and it is what turns me off most homemade hummus dips. I adapted a recipe I saw on Everyday Exotic and it turned out delicious (I doubled the batch even).

Yogurt Hummus

Ingredients:

2 15 ounce cans chickpeas (garbanzo beans), rinsed and drained

¼ cup plain non-fat yogurt

6 Tbsp fresh lemon juice (2 large or 4 small lemons)

2 tsp granulated garlic

1 cup extra virgin olive oil

¼ tsp ground black pepper and salt, or to taste

Directions:

Add the beans to a food processor, pulse till chopped. Add in the yogurt and garlic, pulse and then the lemon juice. Process on high and slowly add the oil in a thin stream, blending until it is smooth as you like it. Season to taste, pulse it in.

Serve with cut wedges of pita or Greek bread, store leftovers tightly sealed in the refrigerator.

~Sarah

Artichoke Hummus

I saw a recipe for Artichoke Hummus in a Hungry Girl email and it picked my interest. I ended up changing the recipe a bit, to my liking (for example plain non-fat yogurt is considerably cheaper than buying plain non-fat Greek yogurt! and frozen artichokes have less sodium than canned ones) and as well used a food processor. They called for a blender, which I am sure is because not everyone owns a processor. But with hummus you get a much nicer product and it can be thicker as well (a blender can’t handle it like that). It is very good and made a nice bed for leftover meatloaf for my lunch today. Yum! It is a high fiber and protein snack to say the least.

Served with Sandwich Thins® for dipping:

Artichoke Hummus

Ingredients:

  • 12-ounce bag frozen artichoke hearts, thawed
  • 15-ounce can garbanzo beans (chickpeas), rinsed and drained
  • ¼ cup plain non-fat yogurt
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice (bottled is fine)
  • 1½ tsp crushed garlic (jarred works well)
  • ½ tsp dry parsley
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp paprika

Directions:

Put all the ingredients into a food processor and process on high, scraping the sides often, until thoroughly mixed. Let chill for a couple of hours for the flavors to meld, covered tightly.

Makes about 2½ cups hummus.

My leftover lunch served on a hummus ‘bed’:

~Sarah

Hummus Soup

We had this two ways, first as soup last night with salad on the side and then this afternoon for lunch. For the lunch I reheated the leftovers and served it as a sauce over freshly cooked Jasmine Rice. I’d say that I preferred it as a sauce, it tasted great with nuttiness of the rice. I made the recipe vegan but chicken broth can be substituted in as well. On the hummus? Use whatever you have on hand, really most flavors would work well. You needn’t use plain unless that is what you have. It was a great way to use up a couple tubs I had in the frig of various flavors (plain, garlic, etc).

Hummus Soup

Ingredients:

  • 3 shallots, peeled and diced
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 cups lower sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 1/2 cups prepared plain hummus
  • 15 ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 15 ounce can white potatoes, drained and diced
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice (fresh or bottled)
  • 1 Tbsp dried parsley
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper

Directions:
In a large saucepan heat the olive oil over medium heat, add in the shallots and cook till golden. Add in broth and hummus, bringing to a boil. Add in the chickpeas and potatoes, heat through on medium-low.
Stir in the lemon juice, parsley, pepper and sesame oil. Add more pepper and salt as desired.

Serves 4. (Or save the leftovers and serve over rice as a sauce!)

~Sarah

Hummus Potato Salad

This recipe has potential but needs more zing (to me at least). If I do another run of it I will be leaving out the celery (crunchy but tasteless) and use pickles instead. I also feel that a more vibrant hummus would stand out better, maybe a roasted red pepper over a plain hummus. Still, it has great texture and is much healthier than slathering the mayo as a typical potato salad has. It also has protein due to the tuna added in (yes, not a typical ingredient!)

Hummus Potato Salad

Ingredients:

2 lbs small red potatoes (or yellow)

7-ounce tub hummus

6-ounce container non fat plain yogurt

1 cup diced celery

1/4 cup diced onion

1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley

fresh ground black pepper

4.5-ounce can tuna packed in olive oil

Directions:

Steam the potatoes until done and chill overnight.

Cube into bite size pieces in a large bowl. In a medium bowl whisk the hummus and yogurt together. Add in the rest of the items through the pepper (add 1/4 tsp to start). Toss the dressing gently with the potatoes. Drain the tuna gently and flake, then add in.

Cover and chill for flavors to meld.

~Sarah

Roasted Pepper Hummus & Flat Bread

Kirk and I had fun making flat bread tonight – which if one thinks a bit about it, well it is making flour tortillas! To go along with it I made up a batch of roasted red bell pepper hummus to spread/dip with the flat bread.

Roasted Red Bell Pepper Hummus

Ingredients:

1 12-ounce jar roasted red bell pepper, drained and any seeds removed.

1 19-ounce can of garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained and rinsed.

3 Tbsp lemon juice

1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

1/4 tsp kosher or sea salt

1/4 tsp diced dried garlic (or 1 clove fresh)

In your food processor or blender combine all the ingredinets and whirl till well blended and the texture you prefer. I like my hummus to be more of a dip, if you want a thicker hummus, cut the juice back or tightly press the bell pepper pieces to remove water.

I let the hummus sit in the refrigerator for a couple hours for the flavors to blend. Meanwhile we got busy on making flat bread!

Easy Flat bread

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1/4 tsp kosher or sea salt

1 Tbsp olive oil

1/2 cup water

In your food processor combine the flour and salt.  With the processor on low, drizzle in the olive oil, then let the processor run for 10 seconds to blend. You may need to put your palm over the top if it is kicking up a flour cloud.

With the processor running, slowly add in the water through the top. Continue processing until the dough comes together and forms a ball. You may need to add 1 to 2 Tbsp more water depending on your flour and humidity. Continue processing for another 30 seconds to knead the dough. The dough will look like bread dough.

On a lightly floured counter or cutting board shape the dough into a ball. Divide the dough into 6 pieces, then use a rolling pin to roll each until very thin and about the size of a tortilla. You will need to lightly dust the dough as you roll it – be sure to flip the dough over and roll both sides. Do one at a time to keep the dough moist. (It doesn’t take long!)

Heat an electric grill (skillet) at 350*. One at a time, place a flat bread on the grill. Once the bottom is lightly browned in spots and the bread begins to form bubbles, use a thin spatula to flip the flat bread. Cook for the other side till also getting nice brown spots. Repeat till done!

As for how long it takes per side? Well, it depends on how thin your dough pieces are and even the humidity will play in. Best eaten when hot – they tend to get cracker like as they cool.

Hummus and flat bread

The hummus garnished with cilantro and served with flat bread.

Tasty and easy!

~Sarah

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