The allure of Mediterranean cuisine lies in its vibrant flavors, and one dish that encapsulates this beautifully is the savory Mediterranean Roasted Red Pepper Hummus. This humble yet versatile dip, enriched with the smoky, roasted notes of red peppers, will transport your taste buds to the sun-kissed shores of the Mediterranean.
Hummus, a cherished Middle Eastern and Mediterranean staple, has a rich history that dates back centuries. The word “hummus” itself is Arabic for “chickpeas.” Its origins can be traced to ancient Egypt, where it was a favored dish made from pureed chickpeas, mixed with tahini, olive oil, and various spices.
Roasted red pepper hummus, however, is a variation that has gained immense popularity in recent years. The addition of roasted red peppers not only infuses the dish with a delightful smokiness but also enhances its vibrant reddish hue. This twist on the classic hummus is a testament to the culinary fusion that characterizes Mediterranean cuisine – a melange of flavors from Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa.
1. Roasting the Red Peppers:
- Preheat your oven to 450°F (230°C).
- Place the red bell peppers on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil.
- Roast the peppers in the oven for 25-30 minutes, turning them occasionally, until the skin is charred and blistered.
- Remove the peppers from the oven and immediately transfer them to a bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the peppers steam for about 10 minutes. This will make it easier to peel off the skin.
- Once steamed, peel and seed the roasted red peppers, then set them aside.
2. Preparing the Hummus:
- In a food processor, combine the roasted red peppers, drained chickpeas, tahini, minced garlic, fresh lemon juice, ground cumin, smoked paprika, and 3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil.
- Season with salt and black pepper to taste.
- Blend all the ingredients until the mixture is smooth and creamy. If the hummus is too thick, you can add a little water, one tablespoon at a time, until you reach your desired consistency.
- Transfer the roasted red pepper hummus to a serving platter.
- Drizzle with a bit of extra-virgin olive oil and sprinkle with toasted pine nuts and chopped fresh parsley for a delightful crunch and a burst of color.
- Serve your savory Mediterranean Roasted Red Pepper Hummus with pita bread, fresh vegetable sticks, or as a side dish to grilled meats and fish.
Savory Mediterranean Roasted Red Pepper Hummus is a delightful blend of tradition and innovation, offering a bold twist on a classic dish. It marries the smoky sweetness of roasted red peppers with the creamy richness of traditional hummus, creating a flavor profile that’s both familiar and exotic. Whether you’re hosting a gathering or simply indulging in a solo snack, this nutty dip is a surefire way to transport your taste buds to the sun-soaked Mediterranean coast. Bon appétit!