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RECIPE # 4966 HUMMUS & MARINARA Tuesday Feb. 19, 2013

RECIPE # 4966 HUMMUS & MARINARA Tuesday Feb. 19, 2013

CREATED Feb 19, 2013

WENDY JO PETERSON / NUTRITIONIST & COOKBOOK AUTHOR "Mediterranean Diet Cookbook For Dummies "

Marinara

Prep time: 5 minutes                        Cook time: 35 minutes            Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients:

8 plum or Roma tomatoes

¼ cup olive oil

½ small onion, minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

¼ cup celery, minced

¼ cup basil leaves, torn

2 Tbsp parsley, chopped

Salt to taste

Directions:

1.              Bring 4 qts of water to a boil.  Cut a "T" in the bottom of each tomato, just enough to pierce the skin.  Place tomatoes in boiling water and blanch them for 1 minute.  Immediately place the tomatoes in ice water to halt the cooking process.  Remove the skins of the tomatoes and roughly chop the tomatoes.

2.              In a skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add onion, garlic, and celery and sauté for 8 minutes.  Add the tomatoes, basil, and parsley, and simmer for 20-25 minutes.  Season with salt and serve.

Variations:

Add in cream at the end for a quick cream sauce

Add black olives, capers, and oregano for Sicilian flair

Add cumin, coriander, and lemon zest for a Greek sauce

The options are endless and this recipe makes for a great base! 

Hummus

Prep time:  10 minutes            Yields: 16 servings

Ingredients

2 (14.5oz) cans chickpeas with ¼ - ½ cup of liquid reserved

Juice of 2 lemons

2 garlic cloves

¼ Tbsp olive oil

¼ cup tahini paste

½ tsp salt

Pinch of cayenne pepper

Directions

Drain the chickpeas and reserve ¼- ½ cups of the liquid for blending. Place the chickpeas in a food processor and puree until smooth.

Next, add the lemon juice, garlic cloves, olive oil, tahini paste, salt, and cayenne pepper and blend until a creamy.  If needed, add in remaining liquid reserved from the canned chickpeas to create desired creaminess.

Place the mixture into a serving bowl and serve with Toasted Pita Chips. 

Pesto (with variations)

Prep time: 10 minutes            Yield: 2 cups

Ingredients:

5 cups basil

3-6 cloves garlic, crushed

¼ tsp red chili pepper flakes

½ cup pine nuts

1 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

½  cup olive oil

Salt to taste

Directions:

1.              Bring 4qts water to a boil.  Add basil leaves for 20 seconds, quickly strain and place into ice water.  Drain and pat dry to remove excess water. *Note, this step helps keep your pesto bright green in color, but you may omit.

2.              In a food processor place the basil, garlic, and red chili pepper flakes, and pulse 10 times.  Add in pine nuts and Parmesan cheese and blend for 1 minute.  Next, turn the food processor on and slowly drizzle in the olive oil.  Add more olive oil if needed.

3.              Serve.

*Note, pesto can be stored in the freezer for 3 months.  When storing in refrigerator layer the top with olive oil and keep for 1 week.

Variations:

Arugula: Replace ½ the basil with arugula and use walnuts in place of the pine nuts.

Spanish influence: Replace basil with cilantro, use almonds in place of the pine nuts, and Manchego cheese in place of the Parmesan.

Spinach: Replace ½ the basil with spinach and use almonds or walnuts in place of the pine nuts.