In the grocery store I was tempted by a sea of hummus, tubs of every size, tinted by all sorts of extras, demanding way too many dip-related decisions. Then it occurred to me that I had a can of garbanzos in my pantry and I could make my own hummus. When I got home and looked for the garbanzos I came across a shiny-topped can of butter beans and, shiny objects being a source of attraction, my attention was diverted. I made Butter Bean Hummus and it was good.
On the second day I pulled a package of Melissa's pre-cooked lentils out of the fridge and made yet another hummus-inspired dip. On the third day, being on a roll of sorts, I made a hummus-like dip with corn. On the fourth day (my stamina being very un-godlike) I rested.
Hummus is actually the Arabic word for chickpeas, so calling dips made of other pureed legumes hummus is a bit of a misnomer. On the other hand "Butter Bean Hummus" has a culinary ring to it while "Butter Bean Dip" falls rather flat as a recipe moniker. If you can't find butter beans you can substitute cannellini beans. I put the butter beans into a food processor with some chopped marinated pepperoncini peppers, diced onion, a dollop of tahini, and a splash of olive oil. I thinned the mixture with a few extra teaspoons of olive oil and a little water. I had some store-bought naan in the freezer. Toasted and cut into strips it made the perfect scoop.
For my Chutnied Lentil Hummus I used my Ninja to make the puree. The Ninja did a reasonably good job, but required more scraping down than a food processor. I used a leftover half- jar of mango chutney and tablespoon of minced onion to flavor the lentils. I chose plain Greek yogurt to thin the mixture because it added flavor without being heavyhanded. In addition to being a dip, the lentil humus would be a great base for a wrap (spread on a tortilla and topped with shredded vegetables).
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to Phoenix New Times's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Phoenix's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
Roasted Corn Hummus was the least creamy of my trio, and thus the least like hummus in texture, but it was my favorite. I started the recipe by holding a couple of ears of corn over the flame on a gas stove just long enough to get a little roasted-brown color. I did the same with a pasilla chili. (A grill, grill pan, or a broiler will get you similarly browned produce). I put the corn kernels, chopped pasilla, a small sliced shallot and a little chili sauce into the food processor. A few tablespoons of olive oil and a little salt gave me a whole lot of chip-ready flavor.
Is the corn recipe really hummus? Maybe not, but whatever it is, it was gone way before we finished debating the issue.
Andy Broder is the chef/owner of AndyFood, A Culinary Studio.