Spring into it .
by Brittany Grace
The sun’s welcomed appearance after the past few dismal days put a pep in my step this morning. I wanted a pep on my plate, too, and needed to put some pretty Nantes carrots to use. So. Smoky ginger carrot hummus was born! There’s plenty of pep here to go around.
The Nantes carrots are extra crunchy, sweet, and a little mineral-y. These carrots deserve to make a “hummus”of their own, one that’s refreshingly vegetable (instead of bean) based. This spunky hummus adds a punch of color and flavor to sandwiches, salads, and snacks. Perfect for these days when you’re itching for spring to get here. A little foreshadowing of the brightness ahead.
The hummus takes advantage of chipotle chile powder and smoked paprika, the spices giving it a complex flavor contrast with the brightness of the carrot. I was inspired by the carrot hummus recipe on The Year in Food, then added a little fresh ginger and a pinch of turmeric to keep things lively.
Smoky carrot and ginger hummus
About 1lb (big bunch) carrots, rinsed
3/4 cup cooked garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
3-4 tablespoons olive oil
1 lemon, juiced (about 3-4 tbs)
1 tbs tahini
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp each: chipotle chile powder, fresh grated ginger, turmeric
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Chop carrots into even sized shapes. Toss in 2 teaspoons olive oil and lightly salt. Roast for about 30 minutes, until carrots are fork-tender. Set aside until cool enough to work with. (Or, steam them on the stove top in a few tbs of water and olive oil, a few minutes, until soft).
While roasting, you can get the rest of the prep done. Using a blender or food processor, add garbanzo beans, 2 tablespoons olive oil, lemon juice, sesame seeds, garlic, all spices and salt.
Once the carrots have cooled, add them to the blender or food processor. Pulse or blend until combined. Have a little carrot juice (whatever is left from the pan they were cooked on) and olive oil nearby if you need to add more because the consistency is too thick. You can also thin down with a few tbs of water, if you’d like. Garnish with fresh herbs.
Enjoy on a sandwich, as a salad topper, as a dip with crackers, veggies or tortilla chips. Also good as a topping in lentil soup.