Lemon and Basil Hummus
Now, I don't consider myself a cheap person, but I will say, when I am walking around the grocery store, there are certain things I just can't justify buying. For what you would pay for a jar of marinara or pesto, you can get 3 times the amount if you pay the same thing to buy all of the ingredients, then make it at home. What is even better, is that you can freeze those things!!
Another item to add to the list, hummus!! I have a 3 year old son who has turned into the pickiest eater ever, but he loves hummus. That makes me so happy, because hummus is healthy, and has great meatless protein as well. The base of hummus is chickpea beans (aka garbanzo). I love the flavor of these on their own, and I even love to roast them in the oven for a salty snack. When you puree the beans up with tahini, garlic, lemon, olive oil, and fresh herbs, you have a very simple snack, that seems very fancy.
Tahini is basically sesame seed "butter" (think of peanut butter, but sesame seeds). It is simply ground up sesame seeds that becomes a luscious paste. It is the base of most hummus recipes, along with the chickpeas. Another classic flavor you will find in is garlic. It's a Mediterranean thing!
Once you have the base of the hummus (tahini, chickpeas, garlic, and olive oil), you really can add any flavors you like. I always have basil around, because that is the only plant I seem to be able to keep alive, and I always have lemon around...because...lemon is the best thing ever. So, those were the flavors I chose, but you can really add any flavors you like.
Hummus doesn't have to be strictly used as a dip. You can use it as a spread for sandwiches/wraps. I love to spread it on some bread with hot sauce and spinach, then top it with a fried egg for an open face breakfast sandwich.
If you are looking for more lunch ideas for your kids, see if they like hummus! It is a great way to change up their lunchtime routine.
Lemon and Basil Hummus
1 can chickpeas/garbanzo beans; rinsed and drained
1/4 cup tahini
1 garlic clove
1 cup fresh basil
zest of 1 lemon; about 1 heaping teaspoon
the juice of 1-2 lemons, depending on how lemony you like it; I use 2 large lemons in mine
salt to taste
3/4- 1 cup olive oil
Place the beans, tahini, garlic, basil, lemon zest, and lemon juice into a food processor
With the mixer running, add in about 1/2 cup of olive oil
Stop and scrape down the side, add a pinch of salt
Process again until smooth, adding more olive oil until you reach the desired consistency
Add more salt, lemon, or basil if desired