Muhammarais a hot pepper dip and forms an important part of Levantine and Turkish cuisine. It originated in Aleppo, Syria. It is prepared using fresh or dried peppers, walnuts, breadcrumbs and olive oil. Sometimes, other ingredients like cumin powder, garlic, lemon juice, pomegranate molasses are added to enhance its flavor.
This dip does not only boasts of its taste but also of its health benefits. Its main ingredients- red bell-pepper and walnut are rich in antioxidants. Red bell peppers are also an excellent source of Vitamin C and contain very good quantities of Vitamin A. Walnuts contain a good amount of Omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin E as well.
Muhammara can be eaten as a dip for finger-foods or as spread for toast/pita bread. It can be consumed immediately or transferred to an airtight container and stored in refrigerator.
1 Roasted Red Bell-Pepper (Deseeded and Chopped)
6-8 Garlic Cloves (Chopped)
1/3 Cup Walnuts ( Dry-Roasted)
1 Tsp Roasted Cumin Powder
3 Tsp Chilli Flakes
4 Tbsp Bread-Crumbs
2 Tbsp Pomegranate Juice
1 1/2 Tsp Lemon Juice
1 Tsp Olive Oil
Transfer all ingredients to a mixer jar and blitz the mixture to obtain paste.
Transfer to a bowl and relish with lavash crackers or toasted pita bread.
Hummus, a Levantine and Egyptian food dip, is prepared with cooked chickpeas/garbanzo beans/kabuli chana. Other ingredients that go into making this delicious dip/spread are tahini (sesame seeds paste), garlic, lemon juice, olive oil and salt. I have added sumac powder, yogurt and chilli flakes to enhance the flavor of hummus. You can try a number of variations to regular hummus like Roasted Red Pepper Hummus , garlic hummus, mint hummus etc.
Chickpeas are known for being a significant source of protein, dietary fiber, folate and iron. They are also considered a moderate source of thiamin, magnesium and vitamin B-6.
Sesame seeds are a rich source of protein, Vitamin B group,calcium, magnesium, iron and a few more minerals. They are high in calories, so it is best to have them in moderation.
Hummus can be relished guilt-free as a dip for finger-foods or as spread for toast/ pita bread.
Serves : 3-4
1/2 Cup Chickpeas (Raw)
4 Tsp Tahini…..Refer to Notes
2 1/2 Tsp Garlic Paste
2 Tbsp Yogurt
2 Tsp Chilli Flakes
1 Tsp Sumac Powder
1 Tsp Olive Oil
1 Tsp Olive oil (For Garnish)
4-5 Sliced Black/Green Olives (For Garnish)
Soak chickpeas overnight or for 5-6 hours.
Transfer soaked chickpeas and water to a pressure cooker and boil . Lower the heat after one whistle and cook for 20-25 minutes.
Allow chickpeas to cool down.
Transfer boiled chickpeas, tahini, garlic paste, yogurt, lemon juice, chilli flakes, sumac powder, olive oil and salt to a grinder-jar.
Blitz the mixture till you receive a smooth paste.
Garnish with olive oil and sliced black/green olives. Serve with lavash crackers or pita bread.
Soak 2 tablespoons of sesame seeds overnight and grind with olive oil and salt for obtaining tahini. Use as necessary and refrigerate remaining in an airtight container.
Water (used for boiling chickpeas) can be added to grinder-jar if you face difficulty in grinding chickpeas.
Cherry tomatoes and garlic dip has a tangy flavor with a perfect balance of sweetness and spiciness. It is easy and very quick to cook. I have used cherry tomatoes as they are sweeter than regular tomatoes. Do not skip vinegar as it really enhances the flavor.
At home, we simply loved this dip with nachos. You can use it as an accompaniment for several other dishes, be it paratha or some snack.
Yields : 1/2 Cup (Approx.)
16 Cherry Tomatoes (Chopped)
16 Cherry Tomatoes (Paste)
1 1/2 Tbsp (Chopped) Garlic
6 Tsp White Vinegar
1/2 Tsp Paprika Powder
1/4 Tsp Chilli Flakes
4 Tsp Jaggery Powder
3/4 Tbsp Oil
Heat oil in a pan and add chopped garlic to it.
Saute for a few seconds and add chopped cherry tomatoes. Cook for 5 minutes.
In the meantime, make a paste of remaining cherry tomatoes by using a grinder.