Hummus, a dip usually made with chickpeas, is by far my favourite dip. When made correctly, it has such a full and punchy flavour worthy of even the fattest cat’s mezze. As we all know, chickpeas make a truly wonderful hummus. However, with variety being the spice of life, there isn’t any harm in substituting them for a slightly different ingredient. Straying beyond the realm of the humble pulse would prove a little foolish in this case, so there we shall remain. Indeed, butterbeans make a pretty favourable choice, since they possess a particularly smooth and creamy texture. As such, this take on the Middle Eastern classic is equally, if not more, palatable than its esteemed counterpart. The use of paprika to make infused oil may appear a little frivolous on the surface, but it is an integral part to this dish. Not only does it give the hummus a rather delectable streak of colour, it also completes its flavour profile with a smoky sweetness. As for the lack of tahini, this dip really doesn’t need it.
Good news, chaps; as you can see, a lovely little pestle and mortar has wended its way into my possession. It is my first and succeeds in making perfect fools of any and every seed it discovers in its gastronomic grasp. The fact it is small and perfectly formed is merely the proverbial icing on the cake. It was, of course, yet another charity shop acquisition; they appear to yield particularly desirable items in these parts. Indeed, three different bowls also joined my collection today, for the paltry price of £2. I feel rather lucky, like the chosen charity shop angel of the Welsh wilds.
Butterbean Hummus with Smoked Paprika Oil
• 400g tin of butterbeans
• 1 clove of garlic
• 1 heaped tsp of cumin seeds, gently toasted and ground
• 2-3 tbsp olive oil
• The juice of ½ a lemon
• Salt and pepper
• 1 tsp smoked paprika
• 2 tbsp rapeseed oil
1. Toast the cumin seeds over a gentle heat; be careful not to burn them. Grind the seeds. To make the hummus one need simply pop all of the ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth. However, it is best left with a little texture since dipping is the intention. To make the paprika oil, simply gently heat the rapeseed oil and paprika together for 2 minutes. Serve with a little of the oil drizzled over.
Cost: Most dishes which make use of pulses end up being incredibly cheap, this one is no exception. The entire bowl of hummus which this recipe yields should set one back no more than 60-70p. This is a far better option than buying a lower quality product from a shop.