Roasted Eggplant & Veggie Sandwich with Hummus on Katz Gluten-free bread

I love me some hummus.  Plain with some garlic.  Roasted red pepper.  Black bean.  I use it to dip raw veggie sticks and as a protein for a great veggie sammie.   Perfect for a snack.  Entrée material.  What’s not to love about hummus?

The versatility of it makes it great for playing with your food.  You can always find something else to add to it to give it another dimension of flavor.   One time I wound up making it too garlicky.  I love garlic.   I liked, but I feared others wouldn’t.  I set aside some of the extra garlicky hummus for myself and then proceeded to search for something to help tone it down.  Olives.  Bingo!  The saltiness of the brine cut the garlic taste down considerably.

I’ve made it several times with the Spanish Olives simply because I love taste of them.  Using Kalamata Olives is wonderful, too.

Fresh veggies anyone?

The funny part about my love for hummus is that I never really cared much for garbanzo beans.  My mother-in-law used to make stuff with them all the time.  I just found them rather blah and boring.

Then I started using dried garbanzos instead of can.  Talk about a world of difference.  I found that there was tons more flavor in the dried beans than the canned.  What I once shunned, I now love.  If I make anything that calls for canned garbanzos, you can bet that I’m using dried.  Pound for pound, dried beans are cheaper than canned, too.  Especially when you buy them from the bulk bins at the grocery.  I can get a pound of dried beans in bulk for the same price as a can of beans.

Spanish Olive Hummus

One word of note before I give you this recipe.  I don’t use tahini in my hummus.  Unless I’m making it for Chaz and he wants it in there.  Before we were able to consolidate our “homes” in October, he would sometimes make hummus at the beginning of the week for himself so he didn’t have to do a lot of cooking during the week.  If I drove up instead of him driving home, he would ask me to make it once he had the beans ready.  I commented once something along the lines of, “You can’t make it yourself?”  He responded with something like, “You make good hummus.”  Okay, so that’s what I heard.  So, for him, I would add some tahini.

Feel free to play around with the recipe and come up with your own favorite!  Also, note that I didn’t add “soaked” to the bean ingredient.  Why?  The beans really don’t need soaking.  They just take a little longer to cook.  About 2-3 hours instead of one depending on the degree of heat you are using.  If you don’t believe me, read this post by Michael Ruhlman.

Spanish Olive Hummus

1 1/2 cups dried garbanzo beans, boiled, drained, and water reserved.

5 garlic cloves (less if you don’t like a lot of garlic)

10 ounce jar Spanish Olives with brine

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon cumin

Add all ingredients to a food processor or heavy-duty blender with at least 1 cup of the reserved bean water.  Process until smooth.  I like my hummus thick, so add more of the reserved water if you like thinner hummus.

This post is linked to 5 Ingredient Mondays at The Daily Dietribe.