Thursday, May 25, 2017

Red, White & Blue Hummus for Your Next Holiday Barbecue


Since I am back from Israel I have had hummus on the brain. There was a LOT of hummus consumption on that trip as well as a hummus making class in Jerusalem. 


One of the ah-ha moments I had in that class I took was the practice of thinning out the hummus with water. I always add more oil. The water gives the hummus a much better consistency. Sounds simple but I never got it until now. I love learning new things. The simple ones make me happiest.



Regular visitors here know I love to do terrible, well, some would say, delicious things to hummus. Only terrible if you are a stickler for the traditional variety. I add all sorts of herbs, veggies, and flavors. I've made nutty hummus and squashy hummus. I've carroted, olived, herbed and caramelized it. 


Don't judge. If you are a hummus purist or have an aversion to blue foods click away now. Don't say I didn't warn you. 



We throw a lot of parties at our Pennsylvania house. Many times I have wonderful foodie and food blogger friends join me in the kitchen and we cook up a storm. They contribute all sorts of creative and delectable dishes. 




To stay on top of it, all year long, I keep a running list of recipe ideas for all holidays. In summer, Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Labor Day are the three big American holiday party weekends we celebrate as well as a few others, like the June barbecue we host for the NYC chapter of the United Nations spouses and their families. I have lots of menus to plan and keep track of, hence the year long running lists. 




If I spot something interesting in a food magazine or online, whatever month of the year we are in, it goes on the respective list. The same for original recipe ideas that just pop into my brain.  A month or two before the party, usually with the help of friends and food blogger attendees, I start to cull, refine and add to the list. 


Last year I made a red white and blue hummus for a  great July Fourth Party we had but I never posted the recipes because I was too busy entertaining to take proper blog pictures of the dish. This year I was determined to get a jump on this to share for Memorial Day Weekend. Not only is this appetizer sampler a wonderful combination of flavors, but it also looks dang pretty and festive at a party or barbecue. 





The bonus? You can make all three hummus recipes several days ahead of time, easing entertaining stress the day guests start arriving. Just remove them from the fridge the morning of the party and let them sit on the counter for an hour or so. When they are at room temperature, swirl them together in a serving bowl. 


For the red hummus, I added roasted beet. The white I left plain but you can add smoked garlic or any other ingredient or flavor that doesn't discolor the batch. The purple was trickier. I tried roasted red onion but it only turned the hummus an icky color. Using purple potatoes worked color wise. The downside was the consistency was a bit gluey from the added starch. However, once you swirl the three together, the dish as a whole works out fine. 




You can also serve each hummus separately, red, white and blue side by side like I did last summer. Again, be aware the purple potato version, although tasty, is a bit gluey in consistency. My guests didn't seem to mind. There wasn't even a smudge left in the serving bowl.  I don't know if that was a testament to the recipe or the fact I serve a lot of alcohol at my parties. 


I pull the outer transparent skin off of each chickpea before making the hummus. You can do this way ahead of time sitting in front of the TV or multitasking something else that does not require your hands. Bag the skinned peas in a ziplock and place in the fridge until ready to use. 




Serve this with mini pita breads, always great for parties. I like to combine white and whole wheat varieties on the serving platter. However, crackers,  flatbreads, toasted pita chips and cut veggies also work well. I throw out a selection of everything so people have a wide choice of what to scoop up with the hummus. 



Red, White & Blue Hummus
Serves: 12


For the red (roasted beet) hummus:

Prep Time:  30 minutes
Bake Time: 45 minutes
Yield: Serves 4
Ingredients:
  • 1 small to medium sized fresh beet
  • 1 15 oz. can chickpeas
  • 1/3 cup tahini
  • 4 tablespoons  extra virgin olive oil
  • 2  tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice. 
  • 2  garlic cloves
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. 
Instructions:
  • Preheat oven to 350°F, Wash, trim and peel the beet. Cut into quarters and brush the beet with olive oil, wrap in aluminum foil and roast for 45 minutes or until soft enough that a knife runs easily through the middle.  Remove from oven, quarter and let cool.
  • Drain and rinse the chickpeas from the can. Use your fingers to gently rub the outer skins off of the peas and discard. This is an optional step that can be a tedious process but it really makes a difference in the creaminess level of the hummus. 
  • Place the beet pieces quarters in a food processor. Add the chickpeas, tahini, olive oil,  lemon juice, garlic cloves, and puree.
  • Add the salt and pulse. Add the rest of the olive oil a steady stream while pulsing the mixture until smooth. 
  • Add more salt and pepper for seasoning and to taste. 
  • If the mixture is too thick add some water a teaspoon at a time until the mixture smoothes out. 
For the regular (white) hummus
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Yield: Serves 4
Ingredients:
  • 1 can chickpeas/garbanzo beans
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus some for drizzling
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Directions:
  • Rinse the chickpeas with cold water.
  • Place them in a bowl and fill the bowl with cold water.Use your fingers to gently rub the skins off of the chick peas. The transparent skins should float to the top. Discard them.
  • Rinse the chickpeas once more and place in a food processor.
  • Add the tahini and 4 tablespoons of olive oil, the lemon juice and the garlic cloves.
  • Puree the ingredients until smooth. 
  • Add salt and give it another go in the FP.
  • If the mixture is too thick add some water a teaspoon at a time until the mixture smooths out. 
For the purple potato (blue) hummus
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Yield: Serves 4
Ingredients:
  • 1 cup tiny purple potatoes
  • 1 can chickpeas/garbanzo beans
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus some for drizzling
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Directions:
  • Bing a small salted pot of water to a boil.
  • Cut the potatoes in half, leave the skins on, add them to the boiling water and cook until soft.  Drain and let cool completely.
  • Rinse the chickpeas with cold water.
  • Place them in a bowl and fill the bowl with cold water.Use your fingers to gently rub the outer skins off of the chickpeas. The transparent skins should float to the top. Discard them.
  • Rinse the chickpeas once more and place in a food processor along with the cooled potato pieces.
  • Add the tahini and 4 tablespoons of olive oil, the lemon juice and the garlic cloves.
  • Puree the ingredients until smooth. 
  • Add salt and give it another go in the FP.
  • If the mixture is too thick add some water a teaspoon at a time until the mixture smooths out.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for your comments and feedback. I love hearing from you!