Tuesday, February 5, 2008

The Underdogs, Super Bowl XLII & Hummus

Hooray for the NY Giants! While I have no real interest in either team, I do like to see the underdog win on occasion. ...although neither of us actually saw the win.

We tried hard to stay up for the game, truly, but to give us a fair excuse, the Super Bowl festivities started at midnight over here. I took a quick nap during the pre-show hum-drum, and woke up in time to see the kick-off. Of course, Tim had to clue me in that it was the start of the 2nd quarter, not the game. Yeah, yeah. I continued to sleep on the couch for most it, while Tim kept his vigil. When we finally forced ourselves to bed, it was about 3am and the start of the 4th quarter.

Although I may have pooped out during the game, I managed to make snacks earlier in the day for our rowdy midnight party.

I made the underdog of dips: Hummus. Everyone loves it, but for some reason, it's not pizazzy enough to get the nod for top honors.

We were habitual hummus eaters in Seattle, but always had the store bought stuff. I guess because it was quick, easy and cheap. However, I have yet to find hummus being sold here, so I make my own now. And guess what, it's quick, it's easy and it's cheap! PLUS, it tastes waayyyyy better.

This is a recipe you can literally whip up in 5 min (just pre-roast the garlic, or use less garlic and dont bother roasting it).

Creamy Hummus (from cookinglight.com)
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup tahini (sesame-seed paste)
4-5 garlic cloves, roasted
4-6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1+ tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin
salt & pepper to taste
2 (19 oz) cans garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained

1. Pre-heat oven to 400.
2. Cut 1/4 inch off the top of each garlic clove, leaving most of the paper skin on the cloves. Place garlic on a sheet of tinfoil and drizzle with a couple teaspoons olive oil. Wrap tightly to enclose the garlic and place in the oven for 30-40 minutes, until the cloves feel soft.
3. Remove garlic from oven and allow to cool, if needed. Squeeze the garlic pulp out of the skin and into a food processor.
4. Place water and tahini in the same food processor and blend until smooth.
5. Add juice and remaining ingredients; process until smooth, scraping the sides with a spatula occasionally.

Serve in a bowl with pita wedges, crackers, chunks of your favorite bread or vegetables (cucumbers are great). Can be kept in the fridge for 4-5 days.

Optional: I've also seen recipes that include 2-3 fresh mint leaves, 1/2 cup yogurt or sour cream (usually in place of the water), or paprika. Hummus is easy to experiment with, and it is very forgiving.

On the health track: Garbanzo beans (or chickpeas, or kirchererbsen in german) are a good source of cholesterol-lowering fiber, and protein (when paired with whole grain pasta, bread or rice) for us veggies. And for the ladies, they provide a nice boost of iron. Add garbanzo beans to salads, soups, lentil or rice dishes, etc. for a very healthy supplement to your diet.

Go underdogs!

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