More Hummus Varieties

More Hummus Varieties -- Epicurean VeganI love that hummus is so versatile and easy to make. It’s also cheaper to make your own than buying prepackaged hummus. Here are two other varieties that a friend introduced me to and please note, the picture shows just half what the recipe yields.

4 garlic cloves
1 teaspoon salt
two 1-pound 3-ounce cans chick-peas, drained and rinsed
2/3 cup well stirred tahini
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice, or to taste
1/2 C olive oil, or to taste
For Parsley and Garlic Hummus
1/4 cup oil
1/4 cup parsley
1-2 garlic cloves, depending on taste
For Roasted Red Pepper Hummus
2-3 peppers from a can of roasted red pepper
1/4 cup of olive oil
Other variety would  be adding black or kalamata olives…yum!

On a cutting board mince and mash the garlic to a paste with the salt. In a food processor purée the chick-peas with the garlic paste, the tahini, the lemon juice, 1/2 cup olive oil, scraping down the sides, until the hummus is smooth and add salt to taste. Add water, if necessary, to thin the hummus to the desired consistency and transfer the hummus to a bowl.

The hummus should be a little thick in consistency, place half in a bowl and save for later for the roasted red pepper.

In the food processor, cleaned, purée the remaining 1/4 cup oil with the parsley and garlic until the oil is bright green and the parsley is minced transfer the parsley oil to a small jar. The hummus and the parsley oil may be made 3 days in advance and kept covered and chilled. If the consistency still seems too thick, add more warm water if needed.

Add the other half of the hummus in the food processor. Add two to three roasted red peppers and olive oil. If needed added more water.

Serve with crackers, veggies, on sandwiches as a spread and a million other ways.

Recipe source: Kitchen Challengers

Spinach Dip

Spinach Dip -- Epicurean VeganA friend shared this recipe with me several years ago and it’s a classic; I make it often for get togethers. I sometimes hollow out a round sourdough loaf to create a bowl and serve in that, but of course, that’s optional. The recipe calls for a leek soup mix, but a vegetable soup mix will work great too.

1 box (10 oz) chopped frozen spinach (I like Cascadian Farms brand)
1 can water chestnuts, chopped
1 C Tofutti sour cream
1 C Veganaise
1-1.8oz packet dried leek soup mix
Round sourdough loaf (optional)

Thaw spinach. I like Cascadian Farms brand because it comes in a plastic bag inside the box. I snip a corner of the bag off and drain as much liquid as I can out. I then wrap the spinach in a thin cotton napkin and squeeze any remaining liquid out of the spinach. Combine all ingredients, mix well and refrigerate until ready to serve. Then add to the bread bowl, if using. Serve with veggies, bread pieces and crackers. Enjoy!

Tempeh Spread

Tempeh Spread -- Epicurean VeganI spent one day experimenting with tempeh for quick and easy appetizers and I love what I came up with! It’s also very versatile, so feel free to add your favorite other ingredients.

8 oz pkg tempeh, original
1 small carrot, grated
1 small red onion, diced
2 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp celery salt
1/2 tsp curry powder
2 Tbs vegetable stock powder
1/4 C Veganaise
Parsley, garnish

Cut the tempeh into small cubes and steam for about 10-15 mins. In the meantime, add carrots and onion to a food processor and chop up until they are very fine. Scoop out into a large bowl. Add the steamed tempeh to the food processor and chop up until fine as well. Combine the tempeh in the bowl with the carrots and onions and add the lemon juice, celery salt, curry powder, vegetable stock powder and mayo. Mix well. Scoop into pre-made phyllo shells and garnish with some parsley.

I halved the batch and after chopping up about a cup of mushrooms and 1/2 C of spinach leaves in the food processor, I added them to one half of the batch for a variation. They’re both delicious! You may want to add more spices to taste. Enjoy!

Tempeh Spread -- Epicurean Vegan