At this time of year, the magical time when New England farms begin to harvest some fresh green vegetables after a cold winter of barren fields, the temptation to serve asparagus at least once a day is powerful. Honestly, though, my husband Ted has a limit on how much asparagus soup, grilled asparagus, and asparagus stir-fry he's willing to consume. I don't really understand it, as I'm sure I could eat asparagus three times a day for the all-too-brief six-week season. Recently I had a nice bunch of spears in the fridge, and I turned to the pantry for inspiration. Chickpeas provided the first glimmer, and tahini the next, and this roasted asparagus hummus came together in minutes after that. Adjust the proportion of vegetable to chickpeas to suit your taste, and process it to a smooth texture or leave it fairly chunky, if that's what you like. The subtle flavor and light green color of the asparagus will delight you, without scaring off any kids who aren't firmly in the asparagus camp. Make this a day ahead for easy entertaining.
Roasted asparagus hummus
Makes 2 cups.
12 medium asparagus spears, woody ends trimmed
1 15-oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 clove garlic, peeled
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup tahini (sesame paste) or peanut butter
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp fresh black pepper
1/4 cup + 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
Pita bread triangles or crackers for serving
Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a small rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.
When the oven is heated, set the asparagus on the baking sheet in a single layer. Sprinkle with a bit of salt and pepper, and 1 Tablespoon of the olive oil. Roast for 5-6 minutes, until the asparagus is just beginning to get tender and very lightly browned. Remove from the oven, cut into pieces, and place in the food processor.
Add the chickpeas to the processor bowl, and pulse until everything is finely chopped. Add the garlic, and pulse several times to chop the garlic.
Then, add the lemon juice, tahini, and salt and pepper. Let the food processor run for 30-45 seconds, until everything is well incorporated.
Through the feed tube, with the machine running, slowly add the olive oil, until the hummus is the consistency you like. You can leave it chunky, or let it become smooth. If you use a bit more or less olive oil than specified, don't worry. It will be fine.
Serve at room temperature, or chilled, with pita triangles or crackers.
More recipes in The Perfect Pantry:
Roasted red pepper and garlic hummus crostini
Greek hummus with white beans and feta
Slow-roasted or sun-dried tomato and basil hummus
Lemon onion hummus
Other recipes that use these pantry ingredients:
Jalapeño and lime hummus, from Gluten-free Goddess
Crispy roasted chickpeas with Moroccan spices, from Kalyn's Kitchen
Artichoke hummus, from Pinch My Salt
Basil hummus, from Simply Recipes
Classic hummus, from Gimme Some Oven
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