My recent foray into ravioli got me making and roasting beets for the ravioli filling and has inspired me to make vegan beet hummus again, something I love to eat but haven’t made in a while (as I overdosed on it some time ago and needed time off). It’s so easy to make, beautiful to look at and packs a nutritious punch too. I make mine in a very, very average (in fact, I am seriously considering an upgrade) blender and it comes out silky smooth without any need for oil. The method to my madness is starting off with peeled chickpeas. That’s right, naked chickpeas make for a much smoother hummus experience. Some people make a face when I tell them that this step is a must, to which I say ‘fine, but don’t expect velvety hummus without it.’ Another ‘magic’ ingredient is aquafaba or simply the water the chickpeas have been cooked in, preferably fridge cold, trickled in slowly as the blender is grappling with the remaining ingredients. That is it, ladies and gentlemen. These two simple tricks will give you a smooth hummus experience you’ll get addicted to
- 3 cups cooked chickpeas (approx. 1½ cups dry), peeled
- 250 g / ½ lb beetroot
- 2 large garlic cloves
- 90 ml / ¼ cup + 2 tbsp quality tahini (I used hulled)
- 1¼ tsp salt, more to taste
- 1 tsp cumin (optional)
- about 240 ml / 1 cup fridge-cold aquafaba*
- 4-5 tbsp lemon juice
- fresh parsley, to garnish (optional)
- black and white sesame seeds, to garnish (optional)
- extra virgin olive oil, to garnish (optional)
- Heat up the oven to 200° C / 390° F. Wash your beetroots. Place washed beetroots in the middle of a large piece of kitchen foil. Holding the edges of the foil up with one hand, drizzle a bit of water to the bottom of the parcel so that the beetroots cook in their own steam. Scrunch the edges of the foil above the beetroots to create a parcel. Bake until you can easily pierce each beetroot with a knife (about 60 min, depending on the beetroot’s size). Once the beetroots are cool enough to handle, peel the skin off.
- Place half of the peeled chickpeas in an upright blender (or a food processor, but blender will give you a smoother hummus) with all the tahini, roughly sliced beetroots and lemon juice. Put the lid on but leave a small opening in the lid uncovered. Switch the blender on and start trickling cold aquafaba through the opening. Once the mixture becomes homogeneous and thick and your average blender starts to struggle (if you have a Vitamix or a similar hi-tech blender you probably will not need to worry about this) start making circles on the surface of your hummus mixture (in the direction of the turning blades) with a spatula (don’t dip the spatula in too deep as you don’t want to accidentally touch the turning blades). This simple action will prevent air pockets forming under the mixture’s surface, helping your blender process the heavy mixture. Add remaining chickpeas and process some more. Finally, season the mixture with salt, cumin, garlic and extra lemon juice if you like.
- To serve, put hummus in a bowl. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, sprinkle some sesame seeds and chopped parsley on top.