As I write, I am gazing out my kitchen window and watching a light rain fall over Portland. I can hear a soft pitter patter as the water pools around the cracks in the sidewalks and streets. My heart feels lighter as I watch the rain; for the first time since I can remember, this rain comes with deep relief and gratitude.
As many of you know, the Pacific Northwest has been plagued with forest fires this summer, with one hitting especially close to home (I mean that both literally and figuratively) burning over 45,000 acres of one of Oregon’s most beloved treasures, the Columbia River Gorge.
The Columbia River Gorge was a significant place to me for many reasons. In the summer of 2015, as I was going through my divorce, I started a weekly tradition of hiking through the gorge. I visited every waterfall and landmark in the 30 mile stretch and have continued to return to my favorite spots monthly. The gorge healed and restored my spirit.
In early September the ashes of the gorge fell on Portland, breaking our hearts and we saw the destruction of humans on one of nature’s truest beauties. Much of the gorge is now destroyed. The hikes are closed indefinitely and we will never be able to explore it in the same way we once did. But with this rain, there is hope. Hope to calm the fires and hope to let restoration begin.
And so, I sit out my window, watching the rain kiss the pavement while I’m sip on a Golden Chai Latte with a deep sigh of relief. To commemorate this rain and the official change of seasons (Friday, y’all!), I made you something special.
Roasted Garlic Pumpkin Hummus.
A smooth and creamy blend of chickpeas, tahini paste, pumpkin puree, and autumnal spices for a smoky, sweet, and seasonal twist on everyones favorite snack food.
As I’ve said before, it took me years to start making my own hummus. In the past I always had many excuses – too messy, too many ingredients, too much work, etc. Once I realized that all of those were excuses and in fact, homemade hummus was tastier, more customizable, and in fact, incredibly easy to make, I started exclusively making my own and never turned back. If you, like I did, have a hard time making your own hummus, I urge you to make this the year you give it a try.
And this Roasted Garlic Pumpkin Hummus is the best way to start!
- 1 can chickpeas, liquid reserved
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 1/4 cup tahini paste
- 1/4 cup reserved chickpea liquid
- 10 cloves garlic
- 2 tsp olive oil (for garlic)
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 lemon juiced
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds, for garnish
- 2 tbsp fresh parsely, for garnish
To roast the garlic, preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Cut the top off of a garlic bulb so that the tops of the garlic cloves are exposed. Drizzle a couple of teaspoons of olive oil over the exposed cloves, wrap in tin foil, and bake for about 30 minutes until garlic is tender and fragrant. Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes before pulling the cloves out of there skin.
In a food processor combine chickpeas, pumpkin puree, tahini, 2 tablespoons olive oil, lemon juice, roasted garlic, reserved chickpea liquid, cumin, and salt. Blend until very smooth, scraping down the sides as needed.
Transfer to a serving dish and top with pumpkin seeds, fresh parsley, and a sprinkle of paprika. Serve with crackers, pita, or vegetables. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
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