Chiqui’s Hummus Appetizer
Hummus is quickly growing as one of America’s most beloved appetizers. Even my grandkids love it! The “caterer” in me loves to go over the top in arranging it on a platter to serve when guests are coming over or if I am asked to bring a dish to a friend’s for a gathering.
I love to serve my Hummus with warmed Naan or Pita Bread torn into pieces but lately everybody is doing Keto so I have been using sliced carrot “chips”, Greek Olives and sliced cucumbers.
Homemade Hummus is so easy to make, especially if you have a high powered blender or food processor. It can be whipped up in no time and believe me, it is sooooo much tastier than anything you can buy pre-packaged!
Don’t skimp on the garlic! My recipes calls for roasting seasoned, whole heads of garlic that just mellow out so beautifully by the slow roasting process. And the luscious topping called “Checca” just takes .this dish to a heavenly level!
Don’t like chickpeas??? This can be made with Cannellini Beans or white navy beans with great results. Feel free to experiment with different kinds of chips or breads, but by all means, make this dish!! You and your guests will be so pleased!
MIDDLE EASTERN HUMMUS MY WAY
1 LARGE HEAD OF GARLIC
1-15-OZ. CAN WHITE CANNELLINI BEANS DRAINED AND RINSED (OR ALL CHICKPEAS IF DESIRED) AND
2– 15-OUNCE CANS CHICKPEAS, DRAINED AND RINSED
1/2 CUP SESAME PASTE (TAHINI)
6 TABLESPOONS EXTRA-VIRGIN OLIVE OIL
1/4 CUP FRESHLY SQUEEZED LEMON JUICE
1 TABLESPOON PLUS 1 TEASPOON SOY SAUCE
1 1/2 TEASPOONS KOSHER SALT
1 1/2 TEASPOONS GROUND CUMIN
1/4 TEASPOON GROUND CORIANDER
1/2 TEASPOON CAYENNE PEPPER
4 SPRIGS FRESH CILANTRO, STEMS REMOVED
1/4 TO 1/2 CUP COLD WATER (IF NEEDED)
8 GOOD-QUALITY PITA OR NAAN BREADS , lightly warmed in oven and cut into triangles or torn into “silver dollar” sized pieces
1 RECIPE CHECCA (below)
2 TABLESPOONS MINCED CILANTRO OR TO TASTE
Preheat oven to 375*. Cut 1/3 inch off of the pointy top of the fresh garlic or deep enough to expose all the cloves. Place the Garlic, cut sides up on a doubled sheet of aluminum foil. Fold up the sides of the foil to form a “cup” to hold the garlic. Drizzle the garlic with two tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and season with a little Lemon-Pepper and Dehydrated Italian Seasoning. Do not cover the garlic. Roast in the preheated oven for about 40-50 minutes on the center rack until the garlic is soft enough to squeeze and is lightly browned.
Fit a food processor with the steel blade and squeeze the cooled, roasted garlic from both pieces into the processor bowl, making sure you do not include the papery skin. Add all the remaining ingredients in the order listed, except the extra water and process until smooth, stopping the processor occasionally to scrape down the sides of the work bowl. Add enough of the 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup cold water to reach the desired consistency. Transfer the puree to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until ready to serve..
Mound the chilled hummus on a serving plate or bowl surrounded by pretty lettuce leaves and arrange the Tomato Checca on top. Garnish with the chopped Cilantro, Thinly sliced Green onions and Tops, Greek (Black) Olives, sliced Cucumbers or Carrot “Chips”and surround with the pita or Naan triangles. Serve immediately.
2 lbs Ripe Roma (plum) tomatoes, seeds removed and cut into 1/4 inch dice
1 teaspoon finely minced fresh garlic
2 tablespoons minced fresh Cilantro
1 1/2 -2 teaspoons salt (to taste)
1/2 teaspoon Lemon-Pepper
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 green onions, thinly sliced on the diagonal (Reserve 2 tabsp. for garnish)
Toss ingredients together thoroughly, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to serve.*CHIQUI NOTE: ASSEMBLE JUST BEFORE SERVING AND REPLENISH AS NEEDED!
Until next time…….Bon Appetit,