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Twink's Treats: Hummus – The New Chip and Dip

Twink's Treats: Hummus – The New Chip and Dip

When I hosted my book club, THE FRAMS, several weeks ago, I needed to come up with a quick and easy appetizer that would not be too heavy or time consuming, since I was also serving dinner. None of my “tried and true” recipes appealed to me for this event, so I opened my refrigerator and studied – and voila! Hummus!

Hummus is a dish that I have only recently started to eat. I only tried it a few years ago and I now love it. It’s a creamy, thick spread which originated in the Middle East and is made primarily from mashed chickpeas and a few other ingredients. Hummus is now one of the most widely consumed Middle Eastern foods in the United States today, and is a great source of protein, fiber and Vitamin C, not to mention tasty! Basic hummus is made from chickpeas, olive oil, garlic, lemon juice and tahini paste. Tahini paste is made from sesame seeds and olive oil and has the consistency of peanut butter. Hummus is easy to make, using a food processor. For my gathering, I made a basic spicy hummus and dressed it up with black beans and tomatoes. If you are pressed for time, you can always use prepared hummus (I love Sabra brand). Here’s my version:

Book Club Hummus
2 cups canned chickpeas, drained with 2 tablespoons liquid reserved
½ cup tahini paste (found in Middle Eastern section of the grocery store)
2 t. minced garlic (adjust more or less, to taste)
1 t. kosher salt (can use more to taste)
Juice from 3 lemons (about 6 tablespoons)
3 tablespoons olive oil
Hot sauce (I use Frank’s )
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 tomato, chopped
Fresh parsley

Turn on food processor – add tahini and lemon juice, mix until well blended. Add garlic, olive oil, salt, mix well. Mix in chickpeas, and mix well. Add reserved liquid and more lemon juice or a teaspoon or two of water if it is too thick. Pulse until consistency is right. Add hot sauce if you wish. Refrigerate at least 4-6 hours or overnight. Warm black beans in microwave or stovetop. Put half of the black beans in bottom of serving dish, top with hummus. Top with about 7 or 8 dashes of hot sauce, then spoon the remaining black beans on top, top with tomatoes and fresh parsley. Serve with pita chips, celery and more Frank’s hot sauce on the side. It’s addicting!

Until next time, be kinder than necessary, and be hopeful, always! 
- Twink

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