Homemade Hummus and Pimento Cheese Dips

When we were on vacation with my family, hummus was one of the snacks that was brought out when we just wanted a little something to nosh on before dinner. 

Not the most inexpensive deli item, hummus is unbelievably easy to make at home. And roasted red pepper hummus? Got you covered there, too. 

Just in case you have roasted red pepper left over, stir a bit into another classic dip: pimento cheese. OK, so my first urge is to spell it “pimiento” — that’s how it used to be spelled, really. But then again, probably no one but me remembers that…

Rita’s hummus

It’s hard to give an exact recipe so I’ll do my best. Recipe is easily doubled.

Ingredients

1 can,15 oz, chick peas (garbanzo/ceci beans), drained

1 nice clove garlic, minced or to taste
1/4 cup lemon juice
3-4 tablespoons Tahini or more to taste
(Tahini, or sesame seed paste, is ground sesame seeds)

1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 cup plain Greek strained yogurt
2 tablespoons olive oil, or to taste – I add more
Salt and cayenne pepper to taste

Instructions

Blend everything either in food processor or by hand.

Serve with pita wedges, a mound of olives, some crisp vegetables.

Make a sandwich!

Now, if you’d like to make the best veggie wrap or pita sandwich in the world, here’s how to do it:

Spread hummus on inside halves of pita or on flour tortilla. 

Add finely diced veggies: maybe cucumber, carrots, olives, avocado, jalapeno, sprouts, pickles, tomatoes, red onion, lettuce, radishes — whatever.

Roasted red pepper hummus

So easy –  just stir in as much red roasted bell pepper, diced fine, as you like. 

Good for you!

Chick peas contain fiber, along with iron and calcium.

Greek yogurt contains probiotics, good for gut health.

Cumin and cayenne contain anti-oxidants.

Pimento cheese

Begs to be dipped into with a saltine cracker, or smeared on a toasted baguette. The only thing here is don’t use pre-grated cheese if you want the real deal. There may be additives in the pre-grated cheese to keep it from sticking together. Adapted slightly from a New York Times recipe. My version adds cayenne and roasted red pepper. Easily doubled.

Ingredients

8 oz. extra sharp cheddar, shredded fine or grated

1/4 cup softened regular cream cheese, cut up

3 tablespoons real mayonnaise or to taste

Salt and pepper 

Cayenne pepper to taste (optional)
Roasted red pepper, diced fine, to taste (optional)

Instructions

Put everything in the food processor and blend well.

Tip: Roast bell peppers, then freeze.

Remove stem and cut in half from top to bottom. 

Smoosh both halves down, skin side up with your hand to flatten. Drizzle with olive oil. Broil skin side up until blistered. Cool and remove as much char as you can. Or grill. Or roast in 450 degree oven. 

Freeze up to 6 months. (I usually drizzle a little more olive oil on before freezing).

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