Beet It

Did you check out my guest post last week over at Jill’s Test Kitchen? Well, if you missed it, I’m posting it for you now. But you should still go check out her site, because she makes some fabulous dishes. And you should help me celebrate my 2 year blogiversary week by entering my CSN Stores giveaway – a $60 shopping spree could be yours!

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There are plenty of foods I may declare that I don’t like, but it’s not always true. It’s just easier to say “I don’t like (blank)” than to try and explain the situations in which I enjoy said food. Take tomatoes, for example. I often say I don’t like them, but I do eat them in things like salsa, ketchup, soups, stews, and of course Caesars 😉 But tomatoes in salads or sandwiches, or in a pasta sauce? No thanks. I’ll pass. Because “I don’t like tomatoes”.

But this post isn’t about tomatoes. It’s about beets.

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Beets are another food I will proclaim I don’t like. I’ve had them a few times – roasted at a work Christmas party, on top of a salad, in borscht – and generally, they haven’t done much for me. Yeah, they were sweet, but they also had this weird earthy flavour that I didn’t enjoy. Borscht was probably the only way I could tolerate them, but I always have preferred my grandpa’s borscht better. I wanted to give them a fair shake, because not only are they a fetching shade of magenta, but they have it going on in the nutritional department. Beets are an excellent source or folate, and they are high in potassium, fibre, and manganese. Their purple colour comes from the compound betacyanin, which has been shown to have antioxidant properties, and specifically has shown promise as a cancer-fighting agent.  Why wouldn’t I want to work them into my diet? But I had yet to find the right way.

Until now.

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Beet hummus has popped up around the blog world from time to time, and always in the back of my mind I thought perhaps this was my gateway into beets. Because everything is better when made into hummus, right?

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So I set out on my own beet hummus making project, wanting to put my own twist on it. Our dill plant was on its last legs, and knowing that beets and dill pair nicely together, I decided to give my hummus a decidedly Eastern European spin. Representing my Russian roots, yo!

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I even employed Brittany’s trick to make my hummus uber-smooth by removing all the pesky chickpea skins. If you have the time, try it. It’s a weirdly calming process once you get into a rhythm. Who needs meditation when you have chick pea skins to remove?

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What I was left with was a stunning magenta coloured dip, that almost looks like it couldn’t occur in nature. But trust me, this is no franken-food.

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I promptly conducted a taste test.

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And what do you know, it was really good. Like, really, really good. Dare I say – the best hummus I’ve made? The beet adds some sweetness without that earthy flavour I remember. And the dill was genius – the flavour improved the longer it mingled. Both my mom and sister tried it, and gave it the thumbs up. In fact, mom raved about it a little bit.

I tried it out with other foods, just to make sure it was up to snuff. Like in a wrap with shredded carrots, avocado, and aged white cheddar.

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With assorted veggies.

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Aussie style on a beef burger.

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And in my favourite portable, refrigeration not required sandwich – hummus, avocado, and cheddar. 

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And it was all good.

 

Dill Beet Hummus

makes approx. 2 cups

Add a pop of colour to your next veggie platter or sandwich with this stunning magenta coloured hummus. The dill and beet flavours give this hummus an Eastern European twist. You might not want to go back to regular hummus after this.

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  • 1 can (19 oz or 540 mL) chickpeas, rinsed and skinned
  • 2/3 cup cooked beets
  • 1 large clove garlic, chopped
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/3 – 1/2 cup fresh dill
  • sea salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/4 – 1/3 cup water

1. Combine all ingredients except water in a food processor, and blend until combined. Add water until desired consistency is reached. Allow to sit for several hours before serving to let flavours meld.

Notes: Although I cooked my beets from scratch, you could easily used canned beets (which would be much less messy). Skinning the chickpeas is completely optional, but it does give you a smoother product.

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Categories: Recipe, Snack, Vegan, Vegetarian

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12 Comments on “Beet It”

  1. September 30, 2010 at 5:00 am #

    YUM! Your dill beet hummus looks delish! I’m glad you tried removing the chickpea skins and liked the results. I totally think it’s worth it!

  2. Laura
    September 30, 2010 at 7:26 am #

    That sandwich looks amazingly delicious. Your food photography is phenomenal.

    I adore beets and I adore hummus. Combining the 2 is sheer genius.

  3. September 30, 2010 at 5:36 pm #

    I love how vivid your beet hummus is–mine always ends up pink. I’ll have to try your recipe ASAP!

  4. October 1, 2010 at 8:34 am #

    I just adore the colour of this beet hummus!

  5. Joanne
    May 11, 2012 at 7:13 pm #

    Ah! It was so delicious! Thanks Marianne!

  6. May 16, 2012 at 9:37 pm #

    How sad is it that I don’t use beets because I’m afraid of stains!?!? lol But honestly that’s an amazing colour on that hummus – I will have to make it once I get a new food processor. But first up on my “must make” list is your grandfather’s borscht. Because I love it so! 🙂

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