This versatile appetizer from the Middle East is more than a simple chickpea dip. The beauty of hummus is that it can be prepared with an assortment of flavor combinations in mind. This recipe offers a subtle sweet current of roasted garlic, paired with the sharpness and tang of preserved lemons, which can be found in Middle Eastern specialty stores. A scattering of hot smoked paprika imparts a subtle kick of heat.
- 2 garlic cloves
- 2 teaspoons olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
- 15 ounces canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- ⅓ cup tahini
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon chopped preserved lemon (peel and pulp), seeds discarded
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon hot smoked paprika
- 1 tablespoon julienned fresh mint
Heat oven to 400ºF. Place garlic cloves on foil sheet, and drizzle with olive oil. Fold foil into pouch. Roast garlic for 30 minutes on lower rack of oven, or until cloves are tender. Remove garlic from oven, and let cool.
In bowl of food processor, add roasted garlic, chickpeas, tahini, 2 tablespoons ice-cold water, lemon juice, preserved lemon and salt. Process for 2 minutes, or until blended into chunky consistency. Transfer into wide, shallow bowl. Drizzle with olive oil, and top with paprika and julienned mint.
Enjoy with crudités, crackers, kettle-cooked potato chips or flatbread. Serves 4–6.
Warm climate unoaked Chardonnay, like those from Australia and California can offer ripe grapefruit flavors, while their vibrant acidity helps highlight the preserved lemon and tahini in this hummus. Ripe, fruit-forward Chardonnays have just enough structure to manage roasted garlic and smoked paprika.