Tag: healthy recipe

Cashew Delights Sandwich Cookies

Whoever thought up the idea a sandwich cookie was a pure genius! A clever way to enjoy 2 cookies at once made better by a creamy filling. It is no surprise sandwich cookies are commonplace and abundant across the world. That’s right, it is not an exclusively American phenomenon. People in other countries may have different flavor combinations, but they too enjoy the double cookie held together by a delicious middle layer. For example, Australia’s favorite cookie is the Tim Tam, which consists of two malted cookies (or their preferred term: “biscuits”) separated by a light chocolate cream filling and coated in more chocolate. Brazil has a wedding day tradition to serve and enjoy a sandwich cookie called Bem Casado, which translates to “well married.” It’s two butter cookies with a dulce de leche filling, covered in powdered sugar.

We are also fans of sandwich cookies here at Once Again Nut Butter! So, here we set off to create an easy recipe to make at home using wholesome ingredients. First, there are some basic rules when creating sandwich cookies. There must be two cookies that are flavorful enough to stand on their own. The cookies should be strong enough to hold a filling. When baked, these cookies must stay soft but not too mushy, to prevent them from   blending with the creamy middle.  A crispy cookie is harder to work with since it crumbles too easily when assembling the final product

Ideally, the filling is not sweeter than the cookie. It is creamy and could contain crunchy ingredients to add a surprise texture for that moment when you bite into it. There are several discussion boards on social media dedicated to arguing for those who like to separate the sandwich cookies, lick the middle and then enjoy the cookie versus those who prefer to bite into the total cookie.  Either way, it is important that   each component of the cookie be able to shine on its own. The cookie we created has a soft cashew butter cookie making the outer layers and a creamy- sweet, nutty filling. The amount of filling you add to each sandwich is entirely up to you. In our test kitchen, we had a bit of filling left over, and we weren’t short of volunteers ready to lick the bowl and also try it as a topping for ice cream or a spread for their toast.

The cashew cookie has a thinner batter, and we found it easier to pour about one tablespoon of it in regular- sized muffin tins to bake them rather than using a conventional cookie sheet. This helped ensure that they were evenly sized and baked. The filling will be rather thick. It allows you to stick both cookies together without having to worry about a the  middle spilling out. But if you would like, you may add a couple of tablespoons of warm water to your filling for a thinner texture. And perhaps you have a different idea for your filling? Share it with us in the comments, We are thinking that a little bit of cacao powder could take these delights up a notch— What do you think?

Cashew Sandwich Cookies on Once Again Nut Butter Blog

Cashew Delights Sandwich Cookies

Cookie

¾ cups of Once Again Nut Butter Cashew Butter

½ cup of coconut sugar (or brown sugar)

1 egg

Filling

½ cup of chopped nuts (Choose your favorite, or use a mix!)

5 oz of dates (Deglet, Noor or Medjool)

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

4-6 teaspoons of warm water

In a small bowl, beat the egg, and mix in the coconut sugar. Next, add the cashew butter and mix well. For evenly sized cookies, we recommend using a muffin tin to bake the cookies. Add about 1 tablespoon of batter to each muffin slot and tap the pan down on the counter to flatten the batter. Place in oven, at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 10-12 minutes, or just until edges become golden. Remove cookies from oven and let them cool before removing them from the pan. They will be a bit soft when first removed from oven, but will harden and be crispier when cooled. The recipe will make about 18 cookies, or 9 sandwich cookies when assembled with the filling.

For the filling, add pitted dates and warm water to food processor until you achieve a homogeneous mixture of paste consistency. Add in chopped nuts and mix well in processor. Now add ½ to 1 tablespoon of filling to each cookie and top it with another cookie. Enjoy these amazing delights! Store in airtight container for up to 5 days. They will keep better in the refrigerator.

Breakfast Banana Peanut Butter Muffins

“I am starving! I feel like I could eat a horse!” Many of us have sympathized with this feeling at one point or another. It’s that feeling of hunger that grows uncontrollably until you are able to find something to eat. Your metabolism is so  low on  energy that you are unable to concentrate; your stomach is growling, and all you can do is focus on where your next meal will come from. That is the description of physical hunger. This type of hunger is influenced by your brain, liver, fat tissue and hormones. True physical hunger usually happens when you haven’t eaten for at least five hours.

It is not however to be confused with psychological hunger. This type of hunger is when your inner voices convinces you that you’re hungry even though your body doesn’t need energy at that particular time. Different circumstances  can trigger psychological hunger; one example is the availability of food. Consider this: you’re at work, and only after your lunch, someone offers you a piece of cake.  Maybe you may turn it down at first, but the smell and the fact that it is on  the table next to you slowly triggers your mind to convince you that you are indeed hungry, and that piece of cake will hit the spot! Habit is another culprit in  psychological hunger. You always eat at ten o’clock in the morning since it is your designated snack time. It doesn’t matter  if you’ve had a larger than usual breakfast that day and didn’t have time to get to the gym as you normally do at six am prior to work. One last example, although there are many others, for psychological hunger trigger is the emotional eating. It is perhaps the most common one of all. You may use food to counterbalance negative things that happen during your day, or you eat to celebrate an event. Unfortunately, those instances are usually times when your body doesn’t need energy, but your mind tells you it’s time to eat!

Balancing those two types of hunger entails  a learning process. It is something that takes lifelong commitment and patience. It is part of mindful eating. Mindful eating means being aware of the food you eat, how your body feels when you eat, and when you choose to eat it. It is the difference between “eating to live” and “living to eat.”

There are ways to slowly work on yourself to recognize cues that distinguish between both types of hunger and allow you to achieve balance and mindful eating. One of them is to plan your meals for the day. Structure helps you better adhere to a plan. Pause before eating and ask yourself if you are eating because you are hungry or because it is what you always do at that time. Routinely identifying patterns will allow you to come up with a better game plan.. That’s a mixed metaphor.

This is not to say you shouldn’t enjoy some of life’s pleasures in the form of delicious treats! Just be aware of when you’ll be eating them, and make them  a part of a meal. And always, watch your portions. The problem is not the chocolate cake but the size of the slice, and usually the extra scoop of ice cream that goes along  with it!

Making your favorite treats part of the meal allows you to truly enjoy them without any guilt! They become  a part of your meal plan. These Breakfast Banana Peanut Butter Muffins have many of the making of a healthy breakfast. They have a dose of fruit, protein, healthy fats and a touch of sweetness. Make them in a large muffin pan or a smaller mini-muffin pan for even better portion control. It is much easier to practice balance and mindful eating when you add Once Again Nut Butters to your routine. Protein and healthy fat create satiety, and that is  exactly what you are looking for in your food. You want your food to work for you rather than  you working for your food!

Breakfast Banana Muffins from Once Again Nut Butter Blog

Breakfast Banana Peanut Butter Muffins

4 large over- ripened bananas mashed (about 1 ½ cups)

¼ cup of Once Again Killer Bee Honey

¼ cup of coconut oil

1 egg

2 cups of whole wheat flour

1 teaspoon of baking powder

½ teaspoon of baking soda

¼ teaspoon of cinnamon

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

1/3 cup milk of your choice

½ cup of Once Again Creamy Peanut Butter

Combine mashed bananas and Once Again Peanut Butter in a large bowl. Once well mixed, add in milk, coconut oil, honey, egg and vanilla extract. In separate bowl, mix wheat flour, baking soda, baking powder and cinnamon powder. Now slowly add in dry ingredient mix with bananas mixture and slowly mix just until well combined. Fill muffin tins three quarters of the way full and place in an oven pre-heated to t 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes or until golden on top. Serve them warm or store in airtight container for up to five  days.

Springtime Treats: Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

Springtime Treats: Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

After the long days of cold, hazy skies, windy afternoons, and freezing temperatures, springtime comes!! That first green leaf makes us all smile and look forward to warmer times in the sun. The transition from winter to spring also happens in the kitchen! You can put away your soup pots (not too far out of sight though, since we do enjoy soup all year round) and take out the sauté pans. We dust off our grills, and the kids start asking for popsicles. Here in Florida, spring comes quickly but only lasts about two weeks! We jump into the 80s and 90s fast, and it starts to feel like summer before spring sets in.

UntitledSpringtime vegetables include artichokes, asparagus, spinach green beans, peas, and so many others. Zucchini is more of a late- spring- into- summer vegetable.  Because of the warmer temperatures of Florida, we grow zucchini almost year round. Our backyard garden gives us a nice zucchini harvest around mid-March.

Recently I was given a “spiralizer,” a kitchen gadget with which you can create various widths and sizes of noodles using vegetables. It’s perfect for zucchini, squash, and cucumbers. It’s a lot of fun to use, and the kids love turning the crank and watching the noodles come out the other end., giving us all a different way to eat up all those spring and summer vegetables.

20150325_193627934_iOSAnother creative way to enjoy vegetables is to include them in baked goods. You can never waste the opportunity to add more variety to your baking! The addition of vegetables can provide extra vitamins and minerals to your recipes while substituting other less nutritious ingredients. You can add pureed, chopped, juiced or shredded vegetables to your creations. It is also a fantastic way to preserve your spring and summer crops: puree or juice them and then freeze small portions to use in baking throughout the year. When baking with vegetables, muffins are my first choice. They are a perfect take-along snack to make ahead of time. Use a mini-muffin pans for small portions that you can include in lunchboxes   or for a pre-workout snack. Since they are smaller than regular- sized muffins, they freeze more easily, and you can make big batches for future use. .

20150325_200044763_iOSThis recipe uses zucchini since we’ve harvested an abundant amount our vegetable garden already! But I bet you can make them with squash, pumpkin or carrots as well. These Chocolate Zucchini Muffins are gluten- free and use only honey as a sweetener. This recipe was made with Once Again Cashew Butter, but you can substitute any of your favorite Once Again nut butters. . I do think the cashew butter was a great choice to pair with the zucchini, however.  Not only did it add the much needed protein boost to these muffins, but also gave them a texture and flavor that was rich and savory at the same time. Once they are baked, you can still see the 20150325_195843702_iOSlittle pieces of zucchini, so it is no way to hide food, but that’s not the point at all! I strongly believe in encouraging kids (and adults!) to find different ways to enjoy vegetables that they don’t like cooked in more traditional ways. I am the first to confess that the only way I eat Brussel sprouts is when they are pureed and mixed into my artichoke dip. Everyone has taste unique buds, and it is okay to like different things.

… Enjoy your veggies in baked goods, too!

Carolina

20150325_225256010_iOSChocolate Zucchini Muffins

1 large zucchini (about 1 ½ cup grated)
1/3 cup honey
1 cup Once Again Cashew Butter
¼ cup unsweetened cacao powder
¼ tsp. salt
1 egg
1 tsp. baking soda
½ cup dark chocolate chips

20150325_212109069_iOSUsing a cheese grater, on the thinner side available, grate about 1 ½ cups of zucchini. It takes a large zucchini or two smaller ones for the amount needed in this recipe. Set aside the grated zucchini. In medium bowl, add honey, Once Again Cashew Butter, and mix well; then add egg, cacao powder, salt, and baking soda. Next, add the, and mix well. Fold in the chocolate chips, and fill each muffin cup to about three quarter’s capacity. Bake in 375F oven for 10-18 minutes. The recipe makes about 24 mini muffins or 12 larger muffins. Store them in the refrigerator for up to four days. Frozen muffins can last up to two months. Just reheat muffins for 45 seconds before consuming.

Cashews: in the Spotlight!

Although cashews have been a popular snack and food source for a long time, almonds and peanuts really have taken most of the spotlight in the cooking scene lately. But all that is about to change — vegans and vegetarians have been experimenting with them for quite a while. Cashews contain more starch than peanuts and almonds, and therefore, when ground, the resulting nut butter is creamier and perfect for thickening recipes. Cashew butter, which Once Again has been crafting for decades, is rich and smooth but has a milder taste when compared to peanut and almond butters. These qualities make cashew butter a multipurpose ingredient to cook with in both savory and sweet recipes.

Lately cashew milk and cashew cheese have made their way from specialty food isles to the more mainstream grocery stores.  And this is fantastic news! The more people interested in discovering cashews, the more products and recipes we’ll find to experiment with.  Cashew butter holds its own when compared to other nut butters in the health category. It contains about 5 g. of protein in 2 tablespoons and offers a good source of copper and magnesium — both minerals help with bone, muscle and joint health.  Also, it has a good amount of iron and folate, which combined with its mostly unsaturated fat profile, makes it heart- friendly nut butter as well.

Once Again has several recipes (found here) using cashew butter: dive in and fall in love with them, if you haven’t already! Here is another simple, easy and superb recipe using Once Again Organic Cashew Butter: Chocolate Oat Pudding. This recipe started as an oatmeal recipe but quickly turned into pudding.  Adding creamy cashew butter makes it smooth and rich — just like chocolate pudding! There are two ways to prepare this delight, depending on your taste. Try both! Warm or cold: the warm way is quick and ready to eat right away, while the cold version involves the same process as overnight oats, that is, leaving the mixture in the refrigerator overnight. So you can eat this one as desert, or savor it on- the -go for breakfast.

… try cashew butter today,

Carolina

Made with Once Again Cashew Butter - Carolina Jantac

Chocolate Oat Pudding
½ cup quick oats
¾ cup cashew or almond milk
6 tsps. cocoa powder (unsweetened)
1 ½ tbsps. 100% maple syrup
1 ½ tbsps. Once Again Cashew Butter

Add all ingredients to a jar with a lid (great time to recycle your Once Again glass jars!) and shake vigorously until all ingredients are well mixed. For the overnight oats- style version, just set the jarred mixture in refrigerator for at least 6 hours. For the ready- to -eat warm- style, transfer mixture from jar to sauce pan, and warm it up for a few minutes. The pudding will thicken as you cook it; for a creamy and thicker result, cook for at least 15 minutes. You may also use the microwave, as you prefer. If so, cook for 90 seconds, using that method. Garnish with coconut flakes and cashews.

Quick Pumpkin Bread made with Once Again Peanut Butter

Right along with my peanut butter obsession goes my new found love for pumpkin puree. How did I not discover the versatility of this vegetable before? (check out our previous post where I exposed the truth: pumpkin is indeed a vegetable). Pumpkin adds so much moisture and flavor to recipes, and for baking it lessens the need for added oil and sugar. It is perfect for cupcakes, muffins and as I just discovered for quick bread recipes too!

This recipe is a twist on my traditional banana bread recipe. You can double up the measurements for 2 loafs, or just make it as is for a single loaf. I usually like to make “smaller” quantities recipe first to test it out. After all, when you are using top quality ingredients you don’t want to waste anything in case the recipe doesn’t turn out the way you hoped. Most recipes adapt well to this trick and will save you money and time as you try them out.

This Pumpkin Bread recipe was tested in both the half and full quantities, so you know it will work! Also as an added bonus it freezes well! I have a couple in my freezer right now, you never know when you’ll need a homemade gift or have a last minute visit from a friend! My mother raised me to always greet your guests at the door and serve coffee or tea as well as a baked good no matter what time of the day it is. And I happen to love carrying on that tradition!  Although this is technically a “quick bread” recipe it tastes more like a cake to me, but I’ll let you try it and let me know what you think.

Quick Pumpkin Bread20141102_184644786_iOS

½ cup Once Again Crunchy Peanut Butter
½ cup raw sugar
1 egg
1 banana
½ tsp pumpkin Spice
¾ cup pumpkin puree
¾ cup flour
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt

Mix Once Again Peanut Butter with sugar, then add egg, pumpkin puree, mashed banana and mix together well. Add the dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, salt and pumpkin spice) and mix until smooth batter. It will be a thicker batter, place in loaf pan sprayed with butter or coconut oil. Place in pre-heated oven at 375F for 45-50 minutes or until done. Note: I used half of the flour as wheat and half as regular. You can also use creamy Once Again Peanut butter instead of crunchy.

For freezing: wrap in parchment paper and foil before freezing to preserve moisture. This recipe will make one loaf, you may double it for 2. The banana was added for a sweeter bread, but you may leave it out and just increase the pumpkin puree by ¼ cup.

…have a wonderful weekend!

Carolina

Roasted Cauliflower: Plus 6 Other Ways to Use Once Again Organic Tahini

I have recently shared some recipes that included Tahini as an ingredient. My family really enjoyed taste testing the recipes as I worked on them, and I have made some of the recipes a few times already for second trials. I was so inspired with my new found love for Tahini that I went a little overboard and stocked my pantry with a few jars. Which lead me to further explore how else I can use this delicious sesame seed butter. I turned to my trusted friend “the internet” for some answers.

I’ll go through some of the ideas I found, and which ones I have tried so far. Through my research I confirmed that tahini can serve as a replacement or alternative to most nut and other seed butters in recipes. Since tahini has a consistency similar to that of peanut butter, it is very versatile.  It does not have the sweetness of nut butters and can be more easily used in entrees and soups. So here are a few suggestions, and since we love new ideas and challenges, share yours if you have one to add to this list!

  • Simple but often overlooked: Just spread it on crackers or toast! My kids approved and enjoyed tahini paired with fruit jam as a sandwich. It can be used instead of mayo on a turkey and cheese sandwich, a veggie wrap, falafels or on a chicken Panini.
  • As a dip of course! When tahini is mixed with a little lemon juice and herbs it becomes a great dip for raw veggies, pita chips or any other chip. It is also perfect to drizzle over roasted veggies. (see recipe below)
  • As a salad dressing. In addition to the lemon juice and tahini add a few teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil, some salt, a little garlic or ginger and you’ll have a thick and creamy salad dressing that is far more nutritious than cream based dressings. It is perfect for Greek Salads, but will also go well with any salad combination. Here is one I have tried at home and thought it was a winning combo: ½ cup tahini, ½ cup olive oil, 2 tsp apple cider vinegar, 2 tsp lemon juice and 2 tsp of ginger. Mix in blender and save left overs in refrigerator.
  • Thicken your soups. I tried this one too! Instead of heavy cream on my broccoli and cheese soup recipe, I added a few tablespoons of tahini and achieved the same thickness with less dairy. If you are trying to cook without any animal product, but have been missing creamy soups, this may just be your answer! Start by adding one tablespoon at a time until you achieve the creaminess you prefer.
  • Tahini is most commonly used in hummus recipes. Traditional hummus calls for garbanzo beans, but this is not the only way to make hummus. I was adventurous to try all different kinds of hummus lately. The tahini and olive oil should be used in the same proportion as usual, but you can vary the legume/vegetable variety in your recipe to make a brand new hummus. So far I experimented with edamame, pinto beans, eggplant, lima beans and white beans.
  • Use it in cookies and cakes recipes in place of nut butter. I have not tried this one yet! I found several recipes online suggesting you can substitute one to one on any recipe that calls for a nut butter.

As you can imagine I will have no trouble going through my stash of Once Again Organic Tahini, and will probably be stocking my pantry on a regular basis! Have fun discovering your family’s favorite way to enjoy tahini!

… get creative and have fun,

 Carolina

 

Roasted Cauliflower with Tahini  cauliflower tahini

1 head of cauliflower
2 Tbsp Tahini
1 Tbsp Lemon juice
1 tsp salt
1 tsp garlic
4 tsp extra virgin olive oil

Wash and cut your cauliflower, then toss it in 2 tsp of extra virgin olive oil, place in oven (400F) and roast for about 15 minutes, or until tender. Once out of the oven, while still warm toss it in the mixture of Tahini, lemon juice, salt, garlic and left over olive oil. Ready to eat!

Baba Ganoush: Don’t underestimate the Eggplant! 5 easy ways to enjoy this summer vegetable.

Baba Ganoush: Don’t underestimate the Eggplant! 5 easy ways to enjoy this summer vegetable.

Surprise, it’s actually a fruit! Although we mostly know it as the purple strange looking, pear shaped vegetable, eggplants can vary from any shade of black to almost white! When picking eggplant at the store look for the ones with the length of a cucumber and the circumference of an apple or pear. The larger ones tend to have more seeds and be a bit bitter. They can’t be consumed raw because it contains a toxin, solamine, which can cause gastrointestinal problems when uncooked. They also don’t need to be stored in the refrigerator, they are a summer “vegetable” after all.

eggplantEggplants are a phenomenal source of fiber as well as several phytonutrients. They contain an impressive array of many minerals and vitamins including folate, potassium, manganese, vitamins C, K, B6, niacin, thiamin, phosphorus, copper and magnesium. The whole plant can be used, the leaves and roots are juiced or even boiled in some cultures to relieve stomach troubles and inflammation. Their dark purple skin is where you’ll find their most powerful antioxidants. These antioxidants are crucial for reducing free radicals in the body and protecting cell membranes from damage, which explains eggplants protective qualities against heart disease and cancer.

Even though they are relatively easy to grow in America, even in your own backyards, people aren’t enjoying as much eggplants as they could! A big reason is the lack of recipes or familiarity with the strange looking vegetable. So here are 5 ways to enjoy eggplant that will make you run to store and start adding them to your menu: (or go get some seeds! They are so much fun to grow and beautiful too!)

Grilled: This is your easiest way to enjoy eggplants. Just wash it well and slice it medium thick, brush both sides with extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle some salt and pepper. Grill 7-9 minutes on each side.  Try it as a topping for your turkey burgers, or forget the buns and use the eggplant instead!

Baked: No time to go outdoors, no worries. Just turn up your oven to about 450F, wash your eggplant well, prick with a fork a few times around, place in baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes. You may also slice it up first, brush with olive oil and sprinkle some salt, pepper and garlic. They make great “noodles” for a vegetable lasagna!

Boiled: Wash eggplant well, you may peel or leave the skin on. Cut it up into chunks and place in pot with about twice as much water as eggplant. Bring it to a boil then lower to simmer and cook for about 10 minutes or until eggplant soft. This method is great for adding the chucks to a dip or for serving it as a side dish. Just season with olive oil and fresh herbs.

Pan seared: Wash eggplant and slice it making about 0.5 inch thick slices. Then drizzle a pan with olive oil, turn to medium heat and pan sear your eggplant until soft and golden brown on both sides. They are a great side item to a summer barbecue, or make a great appetizer too! After cooked just place them in a paper towel to reduce the moisture, sprinkle some cheese and serve them on a multigrain cracker.

Pureed: You can be as creative as you’d like to be here. After roasting it in the oven at 450F for about 20 minutes the center is soft and can be scooped out with a spoon. That soft center is the perfect dip ingredient when added to a food processor. A traditional Mediterranean dip called: Baba Ganoush is simple to make and has a delightful earthy taste that goes so well with pita chips. Check out the recipe below.

… have fun with summer vegetables,

Carolina

baba ganoushBaba Ganoush

1 eggplant
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp garlic paste
1/5 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 Tbsp Once Again Nut Butter Organic Tahini
1 Tbsp Lemon Juice

Wash eggplant well, prick with fork and place in 450F oven to bake for about 20 minutes. Slice it in half and scoop out the center with a spoon. Allow it to cool and place it in food processor until you have a smooth puree. Now add the salt, garlic, lemon juice and mix well. The last ingredient to add is the Tahini which gives it the perfect texture and flavor. Enjoy it fresh or place in refrigerator to store. Perfect as dip for pita chips, or try a dollop on top of a Greek burger!

Funny fact about eggplants: ancient Mediterranean people nicknamed it “mad apple” believing that eating eggplant every day for one month would lead to insanity.

Hummus: Make it at home!

Hummus: Make it at home!

I’m a big fan of hummus and a few years ago, when I got my food processor actually, I was inspired to try everything and anything that required high powered blades for processing. Timing was just right, as I looked up all the ingredients of a traditional hummus recipe and used my very own processor to make it fresh and at home!
Most dips that are sold as shelf stable products have added artificial ingredients to preserve taste and freshness, and we are big fans of dips in my house! My kids love snacking on raw veggies and so do I, and it just so happens that hummus pairs really well as a dip for raw veggies.
20140622_200721426_iOSAfter a few trials to get just the right proportions of each ingredient, and cutting out some labor intense steps to make it much easier I think I have a favorite recipe and some tips to make your own hummus.
The surprise ingredient in hummus for most people is the Tahini. Tahini is made from ground sesame seeds and it adds to the texture and flavor of hummus. Hummus by the way, is a very good dip choice when looking for healthier alternatives. It’s packed with fiber, omega fatty acids (you can thank the Tahini for that!) and lots of minerals such as Manganese, Copper and Iron.
My basic Hummus recipe starts with a can of Chickpeas, and I like to use the organic kind. I do sometimes take the time to cook some chickpeas of my own and freeze small portions for future use but when on short notice the can works well! To really infuse the taste of garlic I found that microwaving the chickpeas (with liquid and all, straight out of the can into a glass bowl) with 3 garlic cloves for 3-5 minutes does the trick. You can of course do this over the stove top as well. Then transfer it all to your food processor while still warm, add about 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, ½ cup of Once Again Nut Butter Organic Sesame Tahini, 1 tsp s20140623_134408000_iOSalt and blend. Then slowly I drizzle in about 1 tablespoon of Extra Virgin Olive Oil in the final seconds of blending. The hummus is smooth and tastes so fresh!
This basic recipe has great potential for personalization! For a spicy version add cayenne pepper and jalapeno pepper to taste. You ca
n also add green olives, sundried tomatoes and oregano for an Italian twist. For a Greek version try adding spinach, crumbled feta cheese and extra lemon juice.
I think you get the idea, making your own hummus is easier than it sounds, but I warn you, once you’ve tried homemade hummus you may not want to go back to the store bought ones!

Carolina