While cooking, listen to this: Dream Life of Rand McNally - Jason Mraz
My junior year in Tel Aviv was the first time I had a kitchen of my own. Apart from the summer spent in an absorption center in Ashdod while volunteering on ambulances (whose kitchen consisted of a sad hot plate, a sad counter and a sad toaster oven), that was the first time I had a space to cook for myself. And what did I do to inaugurate this life's milestone?
Ate nothing but hummus and cucumbers on toast.
The hummus in Israel is just SO GOOD. It is a world of difference from the packaged stuff we have in the US, and once I had access to some of the best hummus on earth, I couldn't get enough of it. Until I could. After my first month of living in Tel Aviv, I had gotten so sick of hummus that to this day I rarely eat it. I reached my hummus quota early on in life, and now I must pay the price. Feel sad for me, it's very tragic.
That being said, I will always have a soft spot in my heart for homemade hummus, which is why we now have two hummus recipes on the blog in our first four months of existence. I am also a true sucker for anything pink, so after seeing this gorgeous gemstone beet hummus from Dana at Minimalist Baker, I knew we had to try it for ourselves. And I'm so glad we did, because it is UNREAL. The sweetness from the beets is tempered by the lemon juice and garlic, and the tahina and olive oil make the hummus reeeeeeal smooth. And it's bright pink! Naturally! Like, from the earth! How cool is that?!
Now, you can't just have hummus by itself. Well, maybe you can, but the idea of a spoonful of hummus is upsetting. Peanut butter, nutella, peanut butter mixed with nutella - all divine on a spoon. Hummus, however, needs some companions, which is where this beautiful crudité board comes in. We chose some of our favorite raw veggies and crackers, sliced them up and piled them into a beautiful rainbow. I've said this before and I'll say it again: if I can't be a unicorn, at least I can eat like one.
Love and meows, Rina
BEET HUMMUS + CRUDITÉ BOARD
Yield: 4-6 servings
Prep Time: 10m | Inactive Cook Time: 45m | Total Cook Time: 55m*
Category: Snacks, Vegan, Gluten-Free, Mediterranean
Source: Minimalist Baker
Special Equipment: food processor/blender
*If you want to roast your beets in advance, then this recipe will literally take 10 minutes. The cook time at the top takes the beet roasting time into account.
1 small beet
1 15-ounce can chickpeas
Zest from 1 large lemon
Juice from ½ of a large lemon
Pinch each of salt and black pepper
2 large garlic cloves, minced
2 heaping Tablespoons tahina
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
Favorite raw veggies, cut into manageable pieces
Pita (make your own here!)
Honestly anything else you feel like eating
Roast the beet: preheat the oven to 450 F, and wrap the beet in foil. Place in a baking dish and bake for 30-45 minutes, or until a knife can easily pierce the beet. Unwrap carefully, and allow to cool for a few minutes. Once the beet is okay to handle, it should be super easy to peel.
Prepare the hummus: cut the beet into quarters and add to your food processor/blender. Blend until the beet has turned into tiny bits. Add the chickpeas, lemon zest and juice, salt, pepper, garlic and tahina. Blend until smooth. If possible, add the olive oil in slowly while the food processor/blender is on. If not, no worries! Just add a little at a time and blend after each addition. Once all of the oil has been added, taste to see if you think it needs more lemon/salt/garlic/etc.
Plate the board: this is where you get full creative license. The key to a beautiful board of any kind is to make it look as full and overflowing as possible - negative space is not your friend here. The great thing about raw veggies is that they come in so many colors and textures, so pick out a few to put on your board. Add a couple different kinds of crackers and you'll be good to go. I really like the alternation of organized items and messy items, but do what you think looks best.
To keep: the hummus will keep well in the fridge for up to 1 week in a tightly-sealed container, and the veggies can be cut and stored in zippered bags for a few days before serving.