If this doesn't brighten up your Monday morning, I don't know what will!! We've hit that point in the winter where we just need a break from the cold and forced indoor time, right? Everybody I know keeps talking about it and I've gotten swept up into the I-need-a-change wave too. Which made me realize that it's been a long time since I've made any sort of hors d'oeuvres or snacky type of food. So I went scurrying through my binders (you should see how many recipes I've been keeping over the years--hopefully, I'll live to 120 so I can get to all of them) and found a bunch of decadent, cheesy, holiday-indulgent treats but since we're trying to be "good" and none of them were chocolate and therefore definitely not worth blowing weeks of deprivation for, I flipped past those pages, until I found this healthy beauty.
Eye-catching, no? And as pretty as it looks, it's super delicious and comes together easily too. Sort of like hummus, but lighter and brighter too. Works well with crackers, pita chips or veggies. Haven't tried it yet, but I bet my adventurous husband will love it as a sandwich spread too.
So...snack problem solved! And all before lunch! Happy Monday!!
Carrot and Chickpea Dip
Makes a nice big bowlful
You will need a food processor or blender for this.
Prep Time for carrots: 5 minutes to peel and chop, 25 minutes to boil; Prep Time for dip: About 7-8 minutes
- 1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
- 2 bay leaves
- Two 15 ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- Zest and juice of one lemon
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil (you might need a bit more to thin it out)
1. Place the carrots, garlic and bay leaves in a medium pot and cover with water by 2 inches. Bring to a simmer, cover and cook for about 25 minutes until carrots are very tender. Drain and reserve the cooking liquid. Throw away the bay leaves.
2. Place the cooked carrots, garlic, chickpeas, lemon zest and juice, salt and cayenne pepper in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel metal blade and process to make a smooth paste. With the motor running, slowly pour in the oil so that the mixture gets creamy and even smoother. Taste and season with more salt if necessary. Add a little more oil or some cooking water to thin it out if necessary. Serve immediately. You can definitely make this ahead and store in an airtight container in the fridge but bring to room temperature before serving.
Note: Recipe adapted from Lidia's Celebrate Like An Italian by Lidia Bastianich. I used dried bay leaves instead of fresh ones and cut down the amount of salt.