You all know hummus right? Chickpeas (garbanzo beans), tahini (sesame seed paste), lemon juice, spices & garlic all blitzed together to make a delicious dip-like paste. Super simple. Middle Eastern in origin (so it’s said – also spread to North African & Mediterranean), hummus gained considerable popularity in western culture, especially of late & now we’re seeing many variations. Like this one I made on the weekend – smoky carrot hummus.
Hummus has many spellings by the way – hommus, homus, hommous & such. I’m going with the American spelling today “hummus”. I added carrots to my hummus for a little natural sweetness & so I could have more with less calories.
Because…speaking of calories, you’d think eating hummus wouldn’t be too calorific now would you?!? I didn’t. Yet there’s 450 calories in one-third cup of tahini paste!! That’s a lot. Tahini paste is made from ground sesame seeds & it’s a classic ingredient in hummus. I could easily sit & eat a whole tub of hummus with a plate of cut-up veggies & think I was being virtuous. I’d be wrong. That’d be over 800 calories. Yikes!! F*#K! When really I should have only been eating a couple of tablespoons.
By adding the carrots, which are low in calories, it allows you to have a little extra without blowing the calorie budget. One-quarter cup of this smoky hummus has 120 calories. Add some veggies, olives, sardines or anchovies & you’ve got yourself a nice little lunch. One that you don’t have to feel guilty about. Actually, after eating this for lunch with my little Mediterranean platter & a couple of liters of water today, I’m feeling almost saintly, I hope it lasts.
- 1 cup sliced cooked carrots (about 3 medium carrots)
- 14 oz (396g) can chickpeas (garbanzo) beans, drained & rinsed
- 1/3 cup lemon juice
- 1/3 cup tahini paste
- 1/4 to 1/3 cup water
- 1 garlic clove, peeled & sliced
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- pinch of salt & freshly ground pepper
- sambal oelek (chili paste), to serve
- cucumber, green bell pepper, celery & spring onions to serve
- Place carrots, chickpeas, juice, tahini paste, water, garlic, paprika, cumin, salt & pepper in a bowl of a food processor; process until smooth. Or, place ingredients in a bowl & use a hand-held blender to process until smooth.
- Top with sambal. Serve with veggies.
- 1/4 cup = 120 calories