Golden Horseradish Hummus

Golden Horseradish Hummus

Golden Horseradish Hummus

Golden Horseradish Hummus

Hummus needs chickpeas. I’ve met modern interpretations at restaurants and was disappointed when I could find no trace or taste of it.

Chickpeas have a distinct flavor and, culturally, if chickpeas are subbed out for other beans, you have bean dip, not hummus. Hummus “means chickpea in Arabic” so if you want authenticity, stick with the chickpeas (aka garbanzo beans).

Tahini, sesame paste, is also a sign of authenticity in hummus. For “proof”, click to see a short video spoof on commercially made versus homemade hummus–Warning the tune is addictive (earworm alert):

Authentic hummus “It’s all about the paste”

However, getting off my high horse on hummus etiquette, there are fun non-traditional flavors that make traditional hummus playful. In this version, I’ve swapped out garlic for a horseradish hummus. Horseradish is a root vegetable in the mustard family. Its root heritage makes it a piquant spice plus it offers multiple health benefits.

This recipe also includes turmeric which blings out the color with a golden hue as well as adding interesting nutritional qualities. Lastly, this version has about half the oil as most hummus recipes without sacrificing flavor or texture.

Golden Horseradish Hummus

 Golden Horseradish Hummus 

Makes about 2 cups

Ingredients:

  • 1 (15-ounce) can garbanzo beans (about 2 cups drained)
  • 2-3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 1 large lemon)
  • 2 tablespoons “prepared horseradish” (see notes below)
  • ¼ cup tahini
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • ⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt

Steps:

  1. Drain the chickpeas and rinse. Reserve a few whole garbanzo beans for garnish.
  2. Combine the chickpeas with the rest of the ingredients in a food processor and blend to a creamy purée. You want a very smooth texture. If the texture is too thick, add a bit more water or olive oil. Tahini comes in varying degrees of textures.
  3. Taste and season further if needed.

To serve, spread in a platter or put in a shallow bowl. Drizzle with olive oil, some chickpeas and serve with warmed flat breads or pita bread cut into quarters or with vegetable crudité.

  Golden Horseradish Hummus

Substitutions: Taste and Nutrition considerations:

  • Horseradish “heat”: as with some other root vegetables, horseradish spicy or piquant notes increase with the amount of processing such as chopping, grinding, grating. A very finely grated horseradish will be spicier than the chopped root. The “heat” is from a volatile oil compound called isothiocyanate.
  • Types of Horseradish: “Prepared” or jarred horseradish” varies significantly in ingredients used, quality and flavor profiles. Refrigerated (fresh horseradish) has a shorter shelf life than the non-refrigerated options.
  • Ingredients: Shelf-stable options can include a variety of additional ingredients with some brands include eggs, artificial flavoring, preservatives such as sodium benzoate and extra oils. Also check the ingredient list for sugar or corn syrups (preservative roles) which can add an odd flavor to hummus.
  • Options: These extra ingredients aren’t offering any health benefits and alter the natural flavor and texture of horseradish. For a better quality product, consider the refrigerated versions which are most likely simply grated horseradish, salt and vinegar. The vinegar helps stabilize the volatile oils (released from grating the root) so that the “heat” doesn’t continue to evolve.

More horseradish info at Food & Nutrition Magazine Savor Horseradish

  • Instead of a dip, use as a sandwich condiment spread
  • Use as in a layered veggie salad dish alternating the hummus with cucumbers, shredded carrots, peppers etc.
  • Use as a “mash” type of substitute to serve with other foods e.g. roasted vegetables or chicken.
  • Storage: Whether using prepared or homemade horseradish store in the refrigerator for 4-6 months or in the freezer for longer. I’ve kept fresh roots in the vegetable tray for up to 6 weeks.

Thank you, horseradish, for being neither a radish nor a horse.

What you are is a liar food.

Jimmy Fallon

About Me

The pleasure of food, good health and well-being through simple habits for eating well and flexitarian low-key cooking.
Michele Redmond

Michele Redmond

French-trained Chef, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist & Food Enjoyment Activist

It's about Making Food First

Get Taste Workshop periodic updates on easy ways to choose and cook foods that satisfy your appetite, nurture your body and make eating well a pleasure.

Roasted Cauliflower Steaks with Sumac

Roasted Cauliflower Steaks with Sumac

Roasted Cauliflower Steaks with Sumac

Roasted cauliflower with sumac

Roasted Cauliflower Steaks with Sumac

Pan-seared cauliflower steaks work great, yet often require finishing in the oven. This cauliflower steak with sumac option shortcuts the pan-searing for a longer, but less fussy, roast in the oven.

While these “C-steaks” may not satisfy a meat eater as a substitute, they will satisfy their appetite and offer meaty texture characteristics. The main stem of these veggie steaks offers a satisfying dense texture that contrasts with the crunchy outer florets and buttery softness of the smaller stems. So whether your diet is veg only or omni, cauliflower steaks can satisfy as a side or as a main dish when paired with complementary foods (see serving notes below).

Sumac is from dried and ground sumac berries. It’s a unique flavor, but you can use a combination of lemon juice and zest to mimic sumac’s lemon notes (see taste notes below) or use any seasoning or spice mix you prefer. Think about balancing cauliflowers sweet notes with something that offers a hint of sour and/or spicy heat.

Roasted cauliflower without sumac

Roasted Cauliflower Steaks with Sumac

Ingredients

  • 1 large cauliflower (2½-3 pounds)
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Few pinches of fine sea salt (about ⅛ teaspoon)
  • 1 teaspoon ground sumac (optional but adds a soft tart or lemon flavor note)
  • A pinch of cayenne (about ¼ of an ⅛ teaspoon)

Steps:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F and arrange a rack to be on the lowest level.
  2. Pull off the outer leaves of the cauliflower but do not cut out the core of the cauliflower. Trim the stem a bit if this helps stabilize the base of the cauliflower flat against a cutting board.
  3. With a chef’s knife, slice the cauliflower from top to base in one nice cut (avoid see-sawing the blade back and forth to keep florets from breaking off the stems). Depending on the size of the head, you may be able to cut 3-4 steaks sized at ¾ inch-thick “steaks” from the main stem and larger branches. As you cut, some florets will fall off which you can also roast or keep for another use.
  4. Place the cauliflower on the baking sheet, drizzle both sides or each steak with the olive oil and then season with salt. If you prefer to use less oil, brush oil onto steaks with a pastry brush.
  5. Place the baking sheet on the bottom rack and cook until cauliflower is browned (about 12 minutes).
  6. Remove from the oven and, with a spatula, gently turn the steaks over. Sprinkle the sumac onto the steaks—the side facing up.
  7. Place back on the bottom rack to finish cooking (about 10-12 minutes) or until browned on both sides and stems feel tender—the thicker branches should yield to a knife when pierced.
  8. Serve warm or room temperature.

Roasted Cauliflower Steaks with Sumac

  • Cauliflower is a high satiety food with good fiber content, high protein content and low calorie values (107 calories for 4 cups chopped).
  • Glucosinolates and isothiocyanates phytochemicals and antioxidants found in cauliflower may be beneficial for inflammation-related health problems and play a role in its particular aroma and flavor.
  • Sumac adds bright red-purple colors and subtle hints of lemon or tang. It’s a great spice option for many dishes when lemons aren’t available or lemon juice isn’t the best form for delivering this taste and flavor element. Plus, lemons can add bitter notes.
  • Serve as a base for cooked grains or seeds such as quinoa
  • Top the steaks with a warm cannellini bean salad
  • Serve with salmon, chicken or fish
  • Serve without the sumac and instead a sauce like garlic walnut and herb sauce
Roasted cauliflower

Cauliflower is nothing but Cabbage with a College Education”

Mark Twain

About Me

The pleasure of food, good health and well-being through simple habits for eating well and flexitarian low-key cooking.
Michele Redmond

Michele Redmond

French-trained Chef, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist & Food Enjoyment Activist

It's about Making Food First

Get Taste Workshop periodic updates on easy ways to choose and cook foods that satisfy your appetite, nurture your body and make eating well a pleasure.

Boursin and Yogurt Artichoke Gratin

Boursin and Yogurt Artichoke Gratin

Boursin and Yogurt Artichoke Gratin

Boursin-yogurt-artichoke-gratin

Boursin and Yogurt Artichoke Gratin

French and American gratins, pronounced “Grawh-tAHn”, range from dense, cheesy and cream-laden to light dishes made simply with a béchamel sauce.This artichoke gratin, satisfyingly filling yet not overly cheesy works well as a dip or topping for a tartine (open-faced sandwich).

The French cheeses used, Boursin and Gruyère, are commonly available in U.S. grocery stores. The unusual gratin ingredient is the Greek yogurt as a complementary creamy element. It also adds a hint of acidity that balances the sweetness of the artichoke hearts.

Yogurt is a source of B-6 and B-12 vitamins, vitamin D, potassium but Greek yogurt offers more protein, a more diverse probiotic profile and is thicker and creamier than most regular yogurt.

Boursin and Yogurt Artichoke Gratin

10-12 servings as an appetizer

Ingredients

  • 4 ounces of low-fat cream cheese, softened
  • 5.2 ounces (150 grams) herbed boursin cheese, softened (see substitutes below)
  • 1 cup low-fat Greek plain yogurt
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne (too much cayenne can mute the herb flavors)
  • 4 ounces gruyère (about 1 ⅓  cups shredded), divided (see substitutes below)
  • 2 (14-ounce) cans artichoke hearts, drained

Steps

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F and adjust a rack to the middle position.
  2. Place the cream and boursin cheese in a mixing bowl to let them warm up a bit. Shred the gruyère and add to the bowl.
  3. Drain the artichokes. Squeeze by hand the liquid from the artichokes. Doing this twice works best.
  4. Once the cheeses are soft enough to mix together with a large spoon, add the yogurt, cayenne, 1 cup of the gruyère (the rest is for a topping) and add the artichokes (break these up between your hands as you add them to the bowl).
  5. Mix all ingredients and spread mixture in an 8×8” baking dish or gratin dish. Sprinkle on the remaining gruyère and place in oven. Bake for 15 minutes or until bubbling. Turn on the broiler for 2-3 minutes to create a lovely, cheesy crust. Serve hot or warm (see serving ideas below).

Substitution and taste notes options:

  • Salt: This is not a missing ingredient! There is salt because the ingredients have enough added sodium to enhance flavors and balance the taste profile.
  • Yogurt: Greek yogurt adds tang and a thicker texture than typical yogurt. Often artichoke gratins or dips use lemon juice or zest for a fresh tang, but Greek yogurt does double duty.
  • Boursin: This soft cow-milk French cheese is often made with parsley, chives, white pepper and garlic. Or add these ingredients to a soft-style goat cheese.
  • Gruyère: A cow-milk cheese that melts well with nutty flavors. Can be replaced by other cheeses that melt well like fontina and have mild flavors. Strong flavored-cheese like cheddar overwhelm the artichoke and herb notes.

Love cheese? Here’s a few notes on enjoying cheese & French cheese passion:

  • Top with some Panko or fresh bread crumbs that have been lightly softened with some butter or olive oil for a crunchy bread topping
  • Serve as a dip with crackers, crostini or use as a topping for a sandwich tartine
  • Toss in 3/4 cup of cooked spinach that has been well squeezed to remove any juices but add just a bit more cheese and yogurt to maintain the gratin texture
Boursin-yogurt-artichoke-gratin-on-table
“Tout le gratin sera là!” = “Everybody who’s anybody will be there!”

Laura K Lawless French language expert

About Me

The pleasure of food, good health and well-being through simple habits for eating well and flexitarian low-key cooking.
Michele Redmond

Michele Redmond

French-trained Chef, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist & Food Enjoyment Activist

It's about Making Food First

Get Taste Workshop periodic updates on easy ways to choose and cook foods that satisfy your appetite, nurture your body and make eating well a pleasure.

Turkey Picadillo Lettuce Wraps

Turkey Picadillo Lettuce Wraps

Turkey Picadillo Lettuce Wraps

Picadillo is fun to say but better to eat. You can do both in Mexico, Cuba, the Philippines and other countries who’ve adopted this Spanish dish. It’s a wild mix of sweet, savory and pungent flavors influenced by its Moorish spice heritage.

Turkey picadillo lettuce

Picadillo varies by country, but it shares a common tradition of using minced beef or pork. However, this recipe goes poultry with turkey picadillo. The bold flavors elevate lean turkey and vegetarian soy crumbles are a good meatless option.

Turkey Picadillo Flavors and Textures

 

Traditional flavoring ingredients include olives, tomatoes, peppers, vinegar or lime and raisins. Yes, raisins in a meat dish. Historically, meat dishes with raisins trace back to 100 AD, so it’s not just a modern way to sneak a healthy fruit into this dish.

Typically picadillo is a comfort food served with tortillas or rice rather than a lettuce wrap. Yet, this version has texture contrasts that add to its “gotta make this again” appeal. Crisp, cool lettuce contrasted with warm, moist ingredients and surprises like crunchy peppers or soft chewy raisins.

Turkey Picadillo Lettuce Wraps

Five to six servings

Main Ingredients

  • 2  tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1  medium yellow onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 1  red bell pepper, diced or chopped (green is more traditional) 
  • 3  garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 ¼ pounds lean ground turkey
  • ¼  teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 15 ounce can small-dice tomatoes with juice (flame roasted is another option)
  • 1 ½  tablespoons tomato paste
  • ⅓ cup golden raisins, chopped
  • Lettuce cups from a large head of iceberg lettuce or romaine lettuce leaves

Spices and finishing garnishes

  • 1 teaspoon of dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne (if the cayenne is particularly hot, start with less)
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 ½ -2 tablespoons fresh lime juice (1 small lime)
  • 12-14 green olives, pitted, chopped
  • Couple pinches salt

Preparation

  1. Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, then add 1 tablespoon of olive oil. When oil is shimmering, add onion, bell pepper then toss on the garlic (a Cuban Sofrito) and cook w/ periodic stirring about 5 minutes until onion begins to brown.
  2. Push the vegetables away from the center of the pan, add another tablespoon of olive oil to the cleared area. Add the ground turkey, sprinkle on the salt and let brown on one side for additional flavor for about 4 minutes. Then break up with a spatula and continue to cook for 3 minutes. (If using low-fat turkey, it will not brown much).
  3. Add tomatoes and juice, tomato paste and raisins and spices and mix all the ingredients together. Once the liquids begin to simmer, reduce heat and cook for 10 minutes. Add lime juice and olives. Taste and adjust salt if needed. Serve in lettuce wraps.
  • Vegan/Vegetarian Version: Soy crumble substitutes replace the turkey without changing any other ingredients.
  • Raisins may seem like an odd pairing with a ground meat or poultry product, but in this dish it not only adds a texture contrast, but the subtle sweetness balances the acidity of the lime and tomatoes as well as the spicy heat.
  • Try to use only fresh lime rather than bottled as the acidity and flavor compounds are significantly different.
  • Serve in warmed corn or flour tortillas, with rice, on top of crispy corn tortillas or on bed of greens or as a stuffing for an acorn squash or baked green pepper.
  • Use for stuffing a poblano chili, tamales or empanadas.
  • Add Middle Eastern touch by using phyllo dough to make boreks.
  • For more Cuban flare serve with black beans, seared plantains or rice.

“Picadillo roughly translates from the Spanish as “mince”. The dish bears some resemblance to American Sloppy Joes” NY Times Ultimate Cuban Comfort Food

Sam Sifton, New York Times

About Me

The pleasure of food, good health and well-being through simple habits for eating well and flexitarian low-key cooking.
Michele Redmond

Michele Redmond

French-trained Chef, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist & Food Enjoyment Activist

It's about Making Food First

Get Taste Workshop periodic updates on easy ways to choose and cook foods that satisfy your appetite, nurture your body and make eating well a pleasure.

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