This Garlicky Roasted Beet Hummus is savoury, sweet, earthy deliciousness and because it’s so incredibly pretty, it’s perfect for gatherings. The first time I used beets in hummus I have to admit I was kind of taken aback by the final appearance. The colour was obviously beautiful but at the same time so ridiculously bright that it looked artificial or dyed and reminded me of the gross petroleum byproducts often hidden in our colourful commercial baked goods, juices, packaged food and even yoghurt that we find on our store shelves today. I’ve had to remind myself that nature provided these incredible colours first!
If you don’t like beets (or maybe just think you don’t), you are not alone. A few short years ago I thought that I hated them too. I was also just beginning my food gardening adventure (that continues to this day), trying to grow everything I possible could and I was pleased with how much success I was having with honestly very little effort. My initial inspiration for wanting to grow anything and everything came from West Coast Seeds and their fantastic, must have free yearly catalogue that contains a handy little planting chart that I love! I would browse through this catalogue, write a list and head to their store, and like everyone else around here, walk in intending to buy just a few things and walk out with an armful. And so it happened with beet seeds. They definitely weren’t on the list and I have no idea what made me even buy them. And I didn’t just buy 1 pack. I bought red ones, and yellow ones and striped ones… and guess what. They grew really well, I had at least a gazillion and had no idea what to do with all those beets that I didn’t even like. The first thing I decided to make (before fulfilling my plan to give them all away) was this Garlic Golden Beets Salad and to my surprise, I loved it! This salad was was oh- my- god delicious and what the heck?! Beets were actually tasty. Although still a bit baffled by my previous dislike for them, they now make a regular appearance on our table. Borscht, salads, hummus.. Roasted, boiled, raw..
Unfortunately this year my beet harvest hasn’t been as successful as it has been in past years. In fact, this year my much loved garden didn’t produce a single one. I planted early in the season but the seedlings didn’t take or perhaps they were eaten. I don’t really know..and I didn’t notice until it was too late. You see, I haven’t spent a lot of time in my garden this season and that is because somehow our city yard was taken over by a wildlife baby boom. From a magnificent, and entertaining, noisy squawking baby eagle to a fiercely protective growly raccoon mama with babies to our favourite and the reason for my garden’t neglect, the incredibly cute and stinky seven skunks who have taken up residence under our shed. Right beside my garden.
I had seen skunks around once or twice (prior to meeting the whole family) and every so often we smell skunk but this is not unusual where we live. However, what was unusual and you can imagine a bit surprising was being bent over in my garden pulling out weeds when I suddenly realized I was face to face with a big ole clump of skunks. As in lots of them. With my heart pounding, I slowly backed away, breath held preparing for the worst. Thankfully they spared me from needing the dreaded tomato bath and instead of spraying just quickly scurried back into their den. Since that day their many daily excursions have become something my whole family looks forward to and within a few short weeks the wee babies were no longer trailing their mama in one nice large easy to see group, but instead could be found scattered throughout the yard. As in everywhere. All the time. Cute, curious, wobbly, hungry, not -so -nocturnal, stinky, fluffy balls of cuteness that apparently need to eat all day long. And because my kids and I love to watch their daily eating, digging, fighting, playing, and even the occasional scolding from their skunk momma, we have given them plenty of space.
We realize that this experience has been priceless and buying beets this year instead of growing our own has been a very small price to pay:)Use canned chickpeas or cook your own pre-soaked chickpeas on the stovetop for about 60-90 minutes, or use your Instant Pot to cook them quickly in just 15 minutes!
Preheat the oven to 400 F (200 C). Wash the beet and remove the leaves. Wrap it in foil, place it on an oven rack and allow it to cook for about 60-70 minutes. You will know it’s done because you will be able to pierce it easily with a fork. When it’s done, remove it from the oven, remove the foil and allow it to cool a bit. Pinch the skin to remove it and cut the beet into quarters.
Add your beet, cooked chickpeas, water, pressed garlic, lemon juice, tahini, salt and cumin to a food processor and blend until completely pureed.
Refrigerate until ready to serve. Serve with cut veggies, crackers, or pita bread.
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- 1 medium sized red beet
- 3 cups cooked chickpeas
- ½ cup water
- 4-5 cloves garlic, pressed
- 4 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- ½ cup tahini
- ¾ -1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- Preheat the oven to 400 F (200 C). Wash the beet and remove the leaves. Wrap it in foil, place it on an oven rack and allow it to cook for about 60-70 minutes. You will know it's done because you will be able to pierce it easily with a fork.
- When it's done, remove it from the oven, remove the foil and allow it to cool a bit.
- Pinch the skin to remove it and cut the beet into quarters.
- Add your beet, cooked chickpeas, water, pressed garlic, lemon juice, tahini, salt and cumin to a food processor and blend until completely pureed.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Serve with cut veggies, crackers, or pita bread.