Today I am featuring the "Cannellini bean hummus" as tenth post in my River Cottage Veg Everyday series.
Although Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall suggests serving this creamy hummus with flatbread or roasted leeks, I decided to serve this easy dip with lots of vegetables, most ot them raw.
For the hummus you need a can of cannellini beans or other white beans (really such a convenient pantry item), half a clove of garlic, a bit of tahini (that lovely sesame paste that has also become a staple at our house), olive oil, some freshly squeezed lemon juice, fresh thyme, sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.- you process these ingredients to a purée. Done. You can adjust the seasonings according to your personal taste. At this point, I ususally end up adding more lemon juice to cut through the richness of the puréed white beans and tahini.
For a “topping” of the hummus, you can prepare a Paprika oil which consists of nothing else but olive oil (or rapeseed oil) and paprika (smoked or sweet). Those two ingredients need some gentle heat and a few minutes for the flavors to develop.
For the raw veggies I served “classic” orange carrots, violet carrots (they are particularly sweet and I love the fact that they are orange on the inside and violet on the outside) and yellow carrots called "crème de lite"(they are less sweet than the other carrots), peas in their pods, red, orange and yellow tomatoes, and small snack cucumbers. And I found what seems to be the last of the sweet corn – I steamed it for a good ten minutes and let it cool before serving it with the other veggies (and, yes, we cut it into equal pieces before eating it with the hummus, same for the cucumbers).
For the paprika that I added to the oil, I settled on a Spanish smoked sweet paprika rather than using a Hungarian one. The flavor of a smoked paprika is quite different from the flavor of other paprika – we found the taste to be very harmonious with this hummus.
I also decided to serve the Paprika oil on the side as opposed to trickling it over the hummus – the kids prefer it that way and who am I to argue when they munch on all these lovely vegetables all the while happily digging into this nice white bean hummus?!
If you own the English edition of this vegetable cookbook, you will find the recipe for the “Cannellini bean hummus & the paprika oil” on page 300 in the chapter on "Mezze & Tapas".
Source for the sweet Spanish smoked paprika from Safinter: