Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Meyer Lemon, Roasted Garlic and Sundried Tomato Hummus

Hummus is a tasty Middle-Eastern chickpea dip that has become very popular here in North America.  I have been playing around with this healthy high protein dish lately and surprisingly, my 8 year old son has fallen in love with it.  

Most basic hummus recipes are comprised of chickpeas, garlic, olive oil, tahini (sesame seed paste), lemon juice and salt.  

I was inspired by the different flavours of hummus at the supermarket:  sundried tomato, roasted red peppers, roasted garlic and traditional.  Out of curiosity, I added 2 heads of roasted garlic, the juice and zest of 1 Meyer lemon and 2 cut up sun-dried tomatoes to the chickpea mixture.  Wow.  It was very tasty and my three-year old wanted to dip her carrot sticks in it.  Even my two older children ended up eating this by the spoonfuls!  I think this will be the way I make hummus from now on.  As long as I have Meyer lemons, roasted garlic and sun-dried tomatoes, I am very happy!   Meyer lemons are known to be sweeter and less acidic (less "pucker") than regular lemons.  

I bought a huge bag of garlic bulbs on sale and made a big batch of roasted garlic.  Once roasted, I froze the individual cloves of roasted garlic and stored them in a zipped sandwich baggie.  To use, thaw the frozen cloves of roasted garlic for 20-30 seconds in the microwave before adding to the food processor.   

Sesame oil is always in my Asian pantry, so I didn't have to go buy tahini.  I love the intense flavour of sesame oil, so you only need a little. 

This recipe is very flexible. You can use tahini instead of sesame oil, add more or less of any ingredient to your taste.  You may try a few cloves of roasted garlic first and taste as you go.  That's how I ended up adding up to 2 heads of roasted garlic!  Once made, the cumin and sesame flavours are pretty strong, but after a few hours, everything mellows nicely. 

Meyer Lemon, Roasted Garlic and Sun-dried Tomato Hummus

1- 19oz can chickpeas or 2 1/4 cups cooked chickpeas
2 heads of roasted garlic*, or 14 roasted garlic cloves
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 to 1 1/2 tsp cumin powder
1/4 tsp sesame oil 
juice and zest of 1 Meyer lemon (about 2-3 Tbsp juice)
2 diced sundried tomatoes, packed in olive oil
2-4 Tbsp water, only add until thickness is desired
1/4 tsp kosher salt, or to taste

Place all ingredients except water into a food processor or blender.  Blend until desired texture.  Add water in small increments until desired thickness.  

Serve with your favourite veggies, pita bread, chips, crackers, as a spread, in a wrap or in a sandwich.  

*To roast garlic, cut 1/4"-1/2" off the tops of the garlic bulbs and place them together on a large piece of aluminum foil.  Drizzle a couple of teaspoons over all the heads and wrap them up tightly in a nice neat package.  Roast them for 35-40 min at 400F.  

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