Along with all the buzz of packing and prepping, we always find ourselves trying to thin out our fridge and pantry before we head out on another trip. In the days leading up to our departure to Turin we had a scattering of produce leftover from our visits to the Farmers’ Markets earlier in the week, but most of the produce had a purpose. Somehow though we ended up with an extra bunch of basil, without any clue what to use it for. We weren’t about to make another pesto and decided against using it for an agua fresca (because I’m actually not so fond of basil with sweets), so where did that leave us?
Well, it left me hitting the blogs in search of something lovely, quick, easy and packed with a whole lot of basil. I finally discovered House Vegan’s beautiful Summertime Basil & White Bean Dip and it checked all the boxes. We had all the ingredients, it used up our remaining basil, it was quick and easy and sounded like the perfect snack for a warm summer day in Oregon. Using her recipe as a foundation, I altered some measurements while also adding lemon juice and tahini to produce a creamier version of her dip. Here is it: Creamy Basil & White Bean Hummus (vegan and gluten-free)!
I’ll never forget the best hummus I ever tried. Surprisingly it was in Budapest, at the aptly named Hummus Bar. This massive bowl of rich, creamy, smooth hummus delicately sprinkled with za’atar, paprika and olive oil was delicious enough to eat on its own by the spoonful. I simply adore a creamy hummus and the worst thing a hummus can be for me is thick, dry and gritty. Tahini helps to provide the body for the perfect creamy hummus, drizzle with some fine olive oil and there’s no better treat in my book.
Creamy Basil & White Bean Hummus
Yield: 2 cups
- 4 ounces dried white beans or 1 (15-ounce) can Great Northern or cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- ½ cup tightly packed fresh basil leaves, torn roughly
- 1 teaspoon nutritional yeast
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder or 3 small garlic cloves, roughly chopped
- ⅛ teaspoon white pepper
- ½ teaspoon salt (to taste)
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for garnish
- ¼ cup sesame tahini (preferably Achva Organic)
In a blender or food processor, combine all ingredients except for olive oil. With the machine running, add the olive oil in a slow stream and process until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Taste, and add more garlic powder or salt if you like; then, puree the mixture again. Drizzle some olive oil and other seasonings you prefer.
Advance Preparation: It is best served the day it is made. You can make this up to a day ahead of using it without olive oil & seasonings on it. The hummus will keep in the refrigerator for about 2-3 days.
Adapted from House Vegan.
What do you do when you have leftover basil? What are some of your favorite basil dishes?