I love love love fall. It’s my favorite season. I love the cool crisp air, and the fall colors and the golden fields and bare branches contrasting against the cool skies. And I love fall flavors and food that has – well – taste but is still comforting. Like this Roasted Red Pepper Hummus.
Hummus is perfect for fall – it has a bit of “heft” to it. And Roasted Red Pepper Hummus has perfect fall colors! And it’s super easy. Roast your own peppers or buy them in a jar. Really, though, roast your own – the jars are pricey and it only takes about 10 – 12 minutes to make your own roasted peppers. You can do a bunch and freeze them for next time. And home-made peppers taste so fresh.
Another little secret? You don’t have to have expensive tahini to make hummus, although a little goes a long way and tahini keeps well in the fridge. I store mine upside down – I swear it stays fresh, longer. You can make a simple Roasted Red Pepper & Chickpea dip (add a little extra liquid if it seems dry, either olive oil or water.) Or you can make hummus with another ground nut or seed or a prepared ground nut or seed butter.
Yep. You heard right – hummus doesn’t have to have Tahini. My latest fave is sunflower seeds because I love the nutty taste but almond is very tasty. Peanuts taste a bit strong to me and overwhelm the rest of the flavors, but still make a great “peanut” dip. I just use my food processor or Nutribullet to make the “butter” and then add in the chickpeas and peppers, then the spices. Taste and adjust. If it’s too thick, or not smoothing out, I add in a touch of olive oil or water.
There are two tricks to super creamy hummus – one is to remove the skins and the other is to process a long time. Really long time. If you’re using a Nutribullet, you’ll want to watch how long you’re processing and not hold it down for more than a minute or so at a time. I also have a whole post on Hummus and Chickpeas with tips, comparisons and pricing info you might want to take a look at.
Roasted Red Pepper Hummus
- 1 large or 2 small red bell peppers or 2 or 3 jarred roasted red peppers
- 1/4 cup tahini or other nut or seed “butter”
- Juice of 1 large lemon
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
- 1 small garlic clove, minced
- 1 15-ounce can chickpeas or 1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas (about 1/3 pound)
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- Salt to taste
Turn broiler on with rack positioned about five to six inches away from heating element. Line a sheet tray with foil and place peppers in a single line (so they’re positioned right under the heating element when placed in oven.) Roast peppers until blistered on top, then turn to a fresh side, repeating until the pepper is charred, blistered and softened, about 10 minutes, total.
Place the peppers in a bowl and cover so the peppers steam for about 10 minutes. When cool enough to handle, peel away the skin, and working over a bowl to catch the juices, open the pepper and discard the skin and any tough ribs.
In the bowl of a food processor or other blender, add the tahini, lemon juice, olive oil and any juices from the bell peppers and process for a minute or two, stopping to scrape the sides. Add the garlic and process a few seconds longer.
Rinse and drain the chickpeas. Add in two additions to the processor and run for about a minute after each, stopping to scrape down the sides.
Add the roasted red peppers, then run for several minutes (being careful to follow instructions from the manufacturer so as not to overheat equipment) until the hummus is smooth and creamy.
If the hummus is too thick or grainy, add a little water, a bit at a time, until desired consistency is reached. Add spices and blend, scraping if necessary until a consistent color is reached. Taste and adjust seasoning.
If desired, garnish with olive oil, a bit of roasted pepper chopped and set aside, black pepper or whatever nut or seed you’ve used. Serve cold with crackers and/or vegetables.