I’ve always adored hummus. On feast days I love to pile it high on baked pita crisps. More recently, with just a few adjustments to the original recipe, it’s been doing double duty as a simple and delicious fast day meal. Served as a dip with whatever fresh vegetable crudites I have on hand. Sometimes just a simple platter of thin wedges of lettuce and green beans, but in the spring and summer months a more substantial wide ranging spread. Think asparagus, cherry tomatoes, celery, cucumber, carrot, radish, fennel, capsicum, zucchini and sugar snap peas.
This fast day hummus is packed full of healthy, appetite suppressing chickpeas and lightened up with the addition of roasted red capsicum in place of some of the olive oil. Out of habit I use tinned chickpeas, but like to roast the capsicums myself. I simply place them whole into a hot oven until the skin begins to shrivel and blacken, about 20 – 30 minutes, then pop them into a plastic bag to sweat for 10 minutes before peeling and deseeding. Of course you can always use char grilled capsicum from the deli instead. My fast day version comes in at a relatively low energy count of 118 calories per quarter cup serve. Teamed with a cup of fresh vegetable crudites it makes a very satisfying meal. Add anywhere between 25 and 60 calories per cup serve depending on the mix of vegetables used.
Hummus With Roasted Red Capsicum
Makes about 2 cups (118 calories per 1/4 cup serve or 28 calories per tablespoon)
1 x 400g tin chickpeas, drained weight 240g (394 calories)
1 red capsicum, roasted, peeled, seeded and sliced into chunks (38 calories)
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (360 calories)
1 lemon, juiced and zest finely grated (12 calories)
1 tablespoon tahini (90 calories)
1 large garlic clove, peeled and bruised (4 calories)
1/4 teaspoon sweet paprika (2 calories)
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
PLACE chickpeas, capsicum, garlic, tahini, paprika, olive oil, lemon zest and juice into a blender or small food processor.
BLEND until smooth. If the hummus is too thick, add a little water to thin it out to desired consistency. Season to taste with sea salt and freshly ground pepper.
TRANSFER to a bowl and chill until ready to serve. Sprinkle with a little more sweet paprika.