Let me tell you about my snack friend, hummus. Hummus is wonderful to enjoy alone or with friends. Hummus is versatile. You can spread hummus on a sandwich, you can have hummus with carrots as a mid-day snack, or you can serve it with crackers on a party platter. But if you really want to dress your hummus up and take it out, place it on a pedestal of crostini and crown it with some basil. Oh, and if you throw a little artichoke in there for fun, then you really have something special.
You may ask .... with the hundreds of hummus selections you can buy at the store, why would I make my own at home? And I would answer .... because it is simple, and if you make it with super fresh ingredients, there is no comparison. Plus, you can impress your friends.
Obviously, for this recipe you can leave out the crostini all together, and you can use the hummus in whichever way you please. The most important part is to be sure you are buying the best ingredients to create your hummus. No marinated artichokes in a can. It will really alter the deliciousness. If your local grocery or speciality store carries them, I recommend using fresh artichokes hearts in olive oil. The white beans can come in a can, but I suggest using an organic brand.
artichoke & white bean hummus crostini
About 10-12 crostini or 2 cups of hummus
1 cup of organic white cannelloni beans
1 cup of artichoke hearts
a drizzle of olive oil
2 small garlic cloves, chopped
1/8 cup of parmesan cheese
salt & pepper
a french baguette
about 4-5 basil leaves, chiffonade
Place the beans and artichokes in a small blender with a drizzle of olive oil. Pulse a few times. Add the chopped garlic, parmesan cheese, another drizzle of olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Pulse until the mixture is blended but still has some texture to it.
Lightly toast your baguette. You can do this in your oven on low heat or in a toaster, whichever is your best toasting method.
With a small spoon, place a dollop of hummus on top of the toasted crostini. Top with the basil chiffonade, and voila! A wonderful snack!
Your hummus can be stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to one week.