– by Jessica Edney
Who doesn’t love homemade hummus? As a veggie, chickpeas frequently enter my diet, being a good source of protein. Not that I’m really thinking of nutrition when I feast upon the garlicky, smooth, creamy delight that is hummus. I can’t get enough of the stuff – in my sandwiches, on crackers, with carrot sticks… mmmm.
To celebrate the beautiful colours of autumn, I want to share with you two ways you can switch up a plain old hummus recipe. On the left we have Blushing Beetroot. Look at that pink. It’s marvellous. On the right, Roasted Pumpkin with Caramelised Onion. It’s the colour of maple leaves. Yum.
So essentially, hummus is chickpeas + olive oil + garlic + tahini + lemon juice + salt & pepper. To make a basic batch, put 250g cooked chickpeas, 2 tsp tahini, 1 crushed garlic clove, 1 tbsp lemon juice, 3 tbsp olive oil and salt & pepper in a food processor, and blend until you get a rough, but cohesive mixture. If it’s a bit too dry, add more olive oil. I tend not to buy pre-cooked chickpeas from cans; I like to soak and cook chickpeas myself because it’s a LOT cheaper. I usually add a couple of tablespoons of the leftover cooking water to the hummus mixture to make it smoother, but if you used canned chickpeas, you can also take some of the water from the can and add it in. Ok, now let’s get colourful.
To make the Blushing Beetroot Hummus, you just add 250g cooked beetroot, 2 tsp ground cumin to the food processor along with the ingredients from the basic recipe. I like to garnish the finished hummus with some parsley for a gorgeous splash of green to contrast with the pink, but you can do however you prefer!
For the Roasted Pumpkin with Caramelised Onion Hummus, roast 500g of pumpkin for 30 minutes at 200C. Meanwhile, heat a dash of olive oil in a frying pan and slowly soften 1/2 chopped onion for approx. 10 minutes. Add 1/2 teaspoon of brown sugar and a splash of balsamic vinegar, and continue cooking slowly for another 5 minutes. Add the roasted pumpkin and the caramelised onions to the rest of the basic recipe ingredients and process it all together. I drizzle my hummus with balsamic glaze, which has a slightly sharp taste to balance out the creamy sweetness of the pumpkin.