Lentils are a great protein source. They are inexpensive and can be prepared in a variety of ways. Their creamy texture makes them an excellent alternative to chickpeas when making hummus.
There are many different types of lentils, so you can use your favorite for this recipe. I almost always have brown lentils on hand, so that is what I use. Red lentils would be perfect too.
Lentil hummus is great as a dip with pita bread or chips and/or fresh veggies. It is also wonderful as a spread for veggie wraps or sandwiches. I like it on a flour tortilla with lettuce, tomato, cucumber, and black olives.
1 cup dried lentils (your favorite kind), picked over and rinsed
at least 2 cups water
1 clove garlic, chopped
2 tablespoons tahini
2 tablespoons olive oil
juice of 1 lemon
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper (optional)
Cook lentils (according to package directions) in the water until they are very tender, almost mushy. The cooking times will vary depending on the type of lentil you are using. The brown lentils I used took about 35 minutes. You may need to add water to the lentils as they cook. Keep an eye of them. Towards the end of cooking, season the lentils to taste with salt. Once done, take the lentils off the heat and drain off excess cooking liquid. Let the lentils cool.
In a food processor, blend the cooked lentils, garlic, tahini, olive oil, lemon juice, cumin, and cayenne until very smooth. You may need to add a little water, about 1 tablespoon at time, to help blend the mixture. I let the food processor run for several (4 – 5) minutes, stopping occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl and check the consistency of the lentil hummus. Blend in the desired amount of salt. Taste the hummus and adjust the seasonings, if necessary.
From October 28, 2005: I made this sandwich spread that my friend Robin posted the recipe for in her feral vegetarian group and it turned out delicious. I used a mix of green and black olives and left out the oregano (I’m not a big fan of oregano). I used the spread to make a fabulous sandwich which consisted of the spread, shredded carrots, and fresh baby spinach on a sourdough baguette. The artichoke-olive spread is also great on a toasted slice of baguette (great dish for a party). The addition of sour cream would make this spread into a wonderful dip.
cream cheese [8 oz.] softened
1 jar [6 oz.] marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped*
* reserve marinade from the artichoke hearts.
1/4 cup [packed] chopped black olives
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. oregano
3 Tbs. reserved artichoke marinade
Mix the cream cheese with an electric mixer until soft and smooth. Stir in artichoke hearts, olives,
seasonings, and reserved artichoke marinade. Cover and chill.
Yield: 1 1/2 cups