Carrot Hummus with Spring Vegetable Crudités
Makes 2 to 2 1/2 cups
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
½ pound (225 g) carrots, peeled and coarsely grated
½ teaspoon whole cumin seed or ½ teaspoon ground cumin
1 can (15.5 oz) chickpeas, drained, or 2 cups cooked chickpeas
2 large cloves garlic
¼ cup fresh lemon juice, or more to taste
½ cup tahini
1 tablespoon pine nuts
Aleppo pepper, hot red pepper flakes, or paprika (editor’s note: I love Aleppo pepper as it isn’t as hot as red pepper flakes and easier to match with wine—paprika is of course the mildest)
Spring vegetables for dipping, such as radishes, baby carrots, roasted beets, sugar snap peas, asparagus tips, Persian cucumbers, hearts of romaine, and scallions
Heat a 10-inch skillet over high heat. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil. When the oil is almost smoking, add the carrots and a generous pinch of salt. Cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the carrots have wilted slightly and lost their crunch, about 3 minutes. Set the skillet aside.
If using whole cumin seed, put the cumin seed in a small dry skillet over medium heat. Cook, shaking the skillet often, until the cumin seed darkens and begins to smell fragrant, about 2 minutes. Let cool, then pound fine in a mortar.
Put the carrots, toasted cumin or ground cumin, chickpeas, garlic, and lemon juice in a food processor and process until very finely chopped. Add the tahini and process until well blended. With the machine running, add enough water through the feed tube to make a smooth puree, about 1/3 cup. Add salt to taste and more lemon if desired. Process for 5 minutes to make a smooth, light hummus. Transfer to a serving plate, spreading it with a rubber spatula and making some “valleys” where oil can pool.
Heat the remaining 2 teaspoons olive oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the pine nuts and cook, shaking the skillet constantly, until they are golden brown, about 2 minutes. Immediately pour the hot oil and pine nuts over the hummus. Sprinkle with Aleppo pepper and serve at once with vegetables for dipping.