There’s nothing like the flavor of garbanzo beans and cinnamon. Let me try that again: What about peanut butter-cinnamon hummus? Searching through recipes online, it’s not hard to track down the main ingredients in traditional hummus. They are: chickpeas (also known as Garbanzo beans), tahini (which is a Middle Eastern sauce made from ground sesame seeds), garlic (lots!), lemon juice, olive oil (sometimes sesame oil), salt and pepper.
And the directions? Put the ingredients in the blender, pulse.
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So it’s not surprising that you’ll find numberless variations of hummus, usually on the savory side – red pepper hummus, chipotle hummus and other pairings. But I wanted to do a more kid-friendly hummus to serve alongside baked pita chips. I was looking for something that would be fun to serve after school. Plus, I wanted to tweak the recipe so that I could leave out the tahini. It’s not that I don’t like the flavor, but it seems I’m always buying a jar, I use a whole tablespoon or two and then within a week or so it goes bad. So what to replace the tahini with?
I figured that tahini adds a bit of healthy high-fat content with all those ground sesame seeds. So why not substitute it with another similar ingredient? Peanut butter. I throw a little peanut butter into all sorts of unexpected places – from chili to stir-fry sauces. The roasted nut flavor adds a layer of depth; I was hoping it would do the same for my hummus.
Now, I didn’t want the peanut flavor to overwhelm the more subtle taste of the chickpeas, so I didn’t use a lot – and I also tossed in some sesame seed oil to give it a hummus vibe. But my hummus lacked the oomph that garlic would have given it. My solution? Cinnamon. I know, I know: Sounds strange, but cinnamon in Middle Eastern foods isn’t a stretch, so I thought it was worth a try. The flavors blended perfectly.
I’ll warn you, though: If you’re looking for the traditional hummus flavor, this isn’t it. But if you want to try something a little different that still has the satisfying texture of chickpeas but with a more snacky feel, give this peanut butter-cinnamon hummus (and pita chips) a try.
Serve with baked cinnamon and sugar pita chips and apple slices. Yummy.