Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Easy Basil Hummus

Hello Friends!

We had a nice break from the heat and humidity last week, but it's baaaccckk.   Ugh.  One of our weather guys always talks about the people who like steamy hot days and how they'll like days like this.  Uh, what?  Are there really those people out there??  I don't mind the heat, but humidity, that's another thing.  If you haven't seen it yet, check out my post on some tips to staying cool this summer.

Flowers from our morning walk (before it got too hot!)

Different topic.  I enjoy cooking and actually find it relaxing.  It's a creative outlet and if I have a plan ahead of time, it's usually not too time consuming...at least the way I like to cook!   Where possible, I really try to make healthier, yet tasty versions of most dishes.  Healthy food really can taste good, and the more you experiment, the more you know what you and your family like, and hence, the better things will taste!  

Admittedly, P isn't super excited about things like Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes, or Chocolate Beet Cake, or the dishes where those healthier items are incognito (although for moms trying to get their kids some additional nutrients, I don't see anything wrong with it!).  Periodically I'll be posting some of the recipes of things I like to cook. 

This is a "recipe" that I made a few years ago, so now that it's summer and I have tons of basil, I thought I'd share.   I say "recipe" because it's one of those things where you throw it all together, and add things to your particular taste. So experiment with it!!

Hummus is such a great thing to have on hand. It's perfect for snacks, as a dip for veggies, add it to salads or sandwiches, or you can even put a dab on a cucumber slice topped with paprika for a fancy looking appetizer (actually had that at a work event a while back - pretty tasty!). There are a million different ways to make hummus and you can add whatever you like or have on hand in order to customize it to your tastes. Aside from being versatile and tasty, it's also really good for you. Lean protein from the beans, healthy fats from the olive oil and a bonus if you eat it with veggies!

So, as I mentioned, the basil is abound these days, and I love, love, love the fresh flavor it adds.  
Try it out, and get creative! Add flavors you like and let me know how it works out! 

Blend basil, garlic, olive oil, S&P really well in the food processor.
Add Beans, drained and rinsed
Ta Da!  Yum.
This is so easy and tasty!  

Side note: typical hummus recipes call for tahini, but I don't use it because I just have a hard time buying something that I’ll only use every once in a while.  If I’m in the mood for the hummus to be more savory, I’ll throw in a little peanut butter (read a recipe somewhere that used PB as a sub).  Sounds weird, but you just can’t go wrong with peanut butter, am I right?!

Basil Hummus
- 1 big handful fresh basil
- 1-2 cloves garlic
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- S&P
- 2 cans garbanzo or Great Northern beans (I like one of each - the GN beans help make it creamy)
- Add water 1T at a time until it's at the texture you like

Blend basil, garlic, olive oil, S&P really well in the food processor. Add beans (drained and rinsed), adding water to get it to the texture you like (~2T).  Enjoy!  I did another batch with basil, oregano and parsley because those were in the garden, too.

Do you have any favorite hummus recipes? What are your favorite ways to use fresh herbs?  Please share in the comments.

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