Peanut Hummus Recipe – A Unique and Delicious Spin on Chickpea Hummus with Garlic and Spices
Peanuts and hummus? Might sound like a strange combination, but it’s actually a match made in flavor heaven. Peanuts and hummus both go waaaaay back… they’ve got history, lots and lots of tasty history. Peanuts in particular have a pretty interesting backstory. The peanut plant is believed to have originated in Brazil or Peru, though the only physical evidence we have are pots made in the shape of peanuts and peanut-decorated jars that date back 3,500 years ago. In 1500 BC, Incans from Peru entombed peanuts with mummies to help with their spirit life. Brazilian tribes also drank a beverage made from maize and ground peanuts.
By the 1800s, peanuts were being grown commercially in the US and were used for oil, as a cocoa substitute and to feed livestock. During the Civil War, both armies looked to peanuts for their high protein value. Peanut butter may have been a result of a St. Louis physician’s need to supply his older patients with a protein-packed food source that didn’t require difficult chewing; it was formally introduced as a health food during the St. Louis World’s Fair in 1904. Both peanuts and peanut butter were an important part of army rations during World Wars I and II, with peanut butter and jelly being a favorite during World War II.
Peanuts have served as a good luck token for NASA since the launch of the Ranger 7 on July 28, 1964. The goal of the Ranger program was to obtain close-up shots of the moon. Each attempt failed until Ranger 7 came along, armed with a jar of “Good Luck Peanuts” in the control room. The tradition has continued since, with peanuts making an appearance at NASA launches and in control facilities.
That brings us to today, and my kitchen, where I recently combined roasted unsalted peanuts and chickpeas to create a new kind of hummus. I’d heard of folks replacing tahini with peanut butter before, but I’d never tried the combination myself. Knowing peanut butter often has added sugar and salt, I decided to use roasted unsalted peanuts so I could control the flavor more. It’s all being ground together anyway, right? I added some ingredients from my Classic Hummus recipe, then threw in some turmeric to warm up the flavor a bit. Turmeric has some pretty terrific health benefits, and it added a lot of oomph to the finished product.
Final verdict? Peanuts and hummus really ARE a match made in heaven. Try it yourself and see! Just make sure you don’t serve this to anybody with a peanut allergy… it should be clearly labeled if you’re putting it on a buffet table around people you don’t know very well. Better safe than sorry!
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- 3 1/2 cups soaked and cooked chickpeas/garbanzo beans (1 1/2 cups dry) OR two cans
- 1 cup peanuts, roasted & unsalted (shelled)
- 8 cloves roasted garlic
- 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice or more to taste
- 1/3 cup reserved liquid from cooking chickpeas or from the can or more if needed
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 3/4 tsp cumin
- 3/4 tsp salt, or more to taste
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- Combine all ingredients in a food processor. Pulse the ingredients for about 60 seconds, then process until smooth. Taste the mixture and add more salt or lemon juice to taste, blend again. If the texture seems too thick, add some of the reserved water from the cooking liquid or chickpea can. Continue to process until desired consistency is reached.
- Serve with warm pita, crackers or crudites for dipping. Note: for a smoother, fluffier hummus, you can peel the chickpeas before you begin. Take careful note not to serve this to anybody with a peanut allergy; it looks like regular hummus and could easily be mistaken, so label accordingly!
“History of Peanuts & Peanut Butter.” National Peanut Board History of Peanuts. National Peanut Board, n.d. Web. 04 Aug. 2014.
Muirhead, Brian, Judith Reeves-Stevens, and Garfield Reeves-Stevens. Going to Mars: The Stories of the People behind NASA’s Mars Missions Past, Present and Future. New York: Pocket, 2004. Print.
Smith, Andrew F. Peanuts: The Illustrious History of the Goober Pea. Urbana: U of Illinois, 2002. Print.