Roasted Garlic Hummus
Originating in the Middle East, hummus is a thick dip made from a combination of puréed chickpeas (aka garbanzo beans), tahini, which is a sesame seed paste (more info below) and lemon juice.
Because hummus contains vegetable protein, antioxidants and dietary fiber, it's a reasonably healthy choice when you're looking for a snack.
You can easily find commercially prepared hummus in most supermarkets, but homemade hummus is so simple to make and it has a much fresher flavor than its store-bought counterpart.
Our recipe uses a whole head of roasted garlic and fresh lemon zest for extra citrusy flavor. It tastes great with warm, oven-toasted pita chips (instructions included) or raw veggies like carrots, celery, cucumbers and cauliflower.
Tahini is a paste made from ground sesame seeds. Many supermarkets carry it in the kosher foods aisle, but if you can't find it you can substitute 3 tablespoons of natural (no sugar added) peanut or almond butter combined with 1 tablespoon of sesame oil.
- 1 can (15-ounce) low-sodium chickpeas, drained
- 1/4 cup tahini (see notes for substitutions)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Juice and zest of 1 lemon
- 1 head roasted garlic (instructions below)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Pinch of cayenne (optional)
- Oven-toasted pita chips, crackers or breadsticks (see below)
- Place the chickpeas, tahini, olive oil, lemon juice and lemon zest in the work bowl of a food processor. Add the roasted garlic and pulse to blend.
- Season to taste with salt (start with a scant 1/2 teaspoon) and a few grinds of black pepper. Add a pinch of cayenne if desired.
- Process until the hummus is smooth and creamy. You may need to add 2 or 3 tablespoons of water while the processor is running to achieve the right consistency. Serve with oven-toasted pita chips.
- Leftover hummus can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days. For best flavor, bring cold hummus to room temperature before serving.
How To Make Roasted Garlic
Preheat the oven to 375°F. With a sharp knife, trim about 1/4-inch off the top of a whole head of garlic - just enough to expose the interior of each clove. Drizzle with a teaspoon or two of olive oil and wrap the garlic loosely in aluminum foil.
Roast for 45 to 55 minutes, or until the garlic is soft and sweet. Set aside until cool enough to handle, then separate the cloves of garlic and gently squeeze the bottoms until the cloves pop out of the open ends and use as desired.
How To Make Oven-Toasted Pita Chips
Preheat the oven to 400°F. Cut pita pockets into eight wedges and separate each wedge into top and bottom halves.
Brush both sides of the wedges with a bit of olive oil and sprinkle the tops with salt and a little freshly ground black pepper. Bake for 5 to 7 minutes or until the chips are crisp and golden.