I have recently learned a new trick when it comes to increasing the vegetable intake of my children. My youngest, in particular is a notorious turner upper of her nose at anything that looks like it once belonged in the ground or on a tree….I have been feeding her by stealth since she discovered she had an ounce of free will. With the exception of corn (on the cobb, not off it), carrot, potato, lettuce (iceberg only) and raw tomato, all of her vegetables are grated, puréed and hidden in other seemingly innocuous food items….until now!!!
This trick operates under what I like to call the Kevin Costner principle….”If you build it, they will come” (Field of Dreams, 1989) or hidden in plain sight. My smallest lady loves to dip things, hummus in particular but also tzatziki, mint yoghurt…even her gravy must come in its own dipping pot. So I’ve taken to slicing vegetables into sticks and then keeping them in the fridge in little ziplock bags (if you’ve already got them prepped it’s a really quick snack AND you can make them in bulk to last for a few days) and then knocking up a lovely bowl of hummus to serve with them. After school I just pull out a big plate, fill it with my sliced veggies and give her a little pot of hummus to dip them in. I swear she eats it without even thinking! I’ve managed to not only get carrots and celery over the line…but cauliflower, capsicum & even broccoli! Now if you’ve got natural little veggie eaters then more power to you (I have one myself), but for those of you that have one with a bit of stubborn streak you’ll know exactly how much of a revelation this is!! I hope it works for you as well as it does for me.
My hummus recipe uses roasted garlic. I find that if you roast the garlic first it gives it a lovely and delicate sweetness and removes the tang that garlic can sometimes have. I also rinse the chickpeas really well to remove any salt from the canning process and I like to rub off as many of the skins as I can to give the hummus a smoother flavour. I only use 50ml of olive oil but make sure it is extra virgin as it will give a nicer flavour. If you find the hummus is too dry, add a little water in at the end of the processing.
- Prep Time : 15 minutes
- Cook Time : 5 minutes
- Yield : 2 cups
Pre heat the oven to 180°C. Place the cloves of garlic, with their skins on, onto a baking tray and bake in the oven for around 10 minutes or until soft. Remove and allow to cool.
Drain the chick peas into a colander and then rinse thoroughly with water, this will remove any excess salt. I like to rub them together with my hands to remove some of the skins….you don't have to be too particular about this, it's fine to let some of the skins stay on, I just like to get rid of as many as I can because they give the hummus a bit of a tangy flavour that I'm not especially fond of.
Place the chickpeas into the small bowl of a food processor (a stick blender will do the job just as well if you have one of those). Squeeze the garlic out of it's skin and into the food processor along with the oil, lemon juice and cumin. Whizz the ingredients until it reaches your perfect hummus consistency…I like a nice smooth hummus…you can always add a little extra water if the mixture looks a little dry.
Chop up some veggie sticks to serve….or serve with some of my delicious quinoa & spelt crackers!