If you, like me, usually have a tub of hummus in your fridge for quick snacking, you might be looking for a way to kick it up a notch or two with some additional flavor. There are dozens and dozens of ways to do that but adding roasted red peppers is one of my favorites. You can roast your own and peel them or just buy some at the deli counter of your local supermarket. Some stores even carry them on the shelves in jars. Most large grocery chains in the United States sell lots of varieties of flavored hummus and roasted red pepper is usually among them. But making your own is quite easy.
Red peppers on their own are sweet and, when roasted, take on an earthy, smoky flavor. I tend to be a little wimpy in the heat department but you can certainly spice these up with some cayenne pepper. Red peppers are loaded with vitamin A and anti-oxidents so they also add a good nutritional boost to an already healthy dip.
A typical Middle Eastern appetizer (mezze) tray includes both hummus and various roasted and pickled vegetables so combining those flavors works well and goes with other classic appetizer ingredients such as falafel, eggplant, tahini and vegetables such as tomatoes, cucumbers and olives.
Most hummus dips are served cold or at room temperature. But this roasted red pepper version is great served as a warm appetizer alongside warm pita or flatbread to scoop it up. Also try topping roasted vegetables with this dip for a burst of extra flavor.
Hummus recipes can include a wide variety of spices so try some cumin, za'atar, oregano or lemony sumac or add to the smokey flavor with the addition of some smokey paprika.
- 1 Can (approx. 15 oz.) of chickpeas/garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
- 1/3 Cup tahini (sesame paste)
- 1/4 cup Lemon juice
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 Cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
- 1/2 Cup - 3/4 Cup roasted red peppers (depending on taste)
- Cayenne pepper, to taste (optional)
In a food processor, combine garbanzo beans, tahini, lemon juice and olive oil. Process until smooth. Add the roasted red peppers and garlic and continue pureeing until you've gotten your desired consistency.
Garnish with parsley and serve warm or at room temperature with hot pita bread or toasted pita chips.
Roasted red pepper hummus can be made up to two days in advance and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Heat up in microwave or on stovetop to serve.