Category Archives: Spreads and Dips

Roasted Yellow Pepper & Garlic Hummus

Hummus is very versatile and can be made with just about any type of bean or legume. Most traditionally though it is made with chickpeas AKA garbanzo beans. 

I like to make all kinds of variations of hummus. Generally, I like to have both garlic and roasted peppers in my hummus. 

 Yields 5 cups (20 servings; 1/4 cup)


2 cans (15 oz) of reduced sodium chickpeas, drained and reserve one 1/4 cup of liquid

7 ounces of roasted yellow peppers  (packed in water NOT oil); drained
6 cloves of garlic (I love love garlic)
3 tablespoons of tahini ( essentially Sesame seed butter)

1 tablespoon of olive oil

6 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lime juice

1 teaspoon of curry powder

1/2 teaspoon of ground cumin
1 1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon of Penzeys Arizona seasoning
1/2 teaspoon of whole coriander seeds


Place all the ingredients in the vitamix and place the device on liquid setting. Once mode complete, place contents into sealable container. Allow the contents to marry overnight for optimal flavor

Keep stored in refrigerator. 

My favorite combinations with this hummus recipe is tacos tacos, and fresh turnips.

Herbed Pesto

My grandfather mentioned to me the other day the weather report mentioned it was going to freeze in the next few nights. Right away, I realized I still had to pick a few herbs and rhubarb out of the garden before they were destroyed by the frost.

If you plant a garden you know, you put to much time into it not to preserve the harvest for enjoyment for the winter months. Ironically,  I just used up my last frozen batch about a week ago for some pasta. This recipe freezes really well. I like to freeze it in silicone 1 ounce ice cube trays, it makes for easy use for sauces, soups, and marinating meat.

Recipe Yields : 21 ounces

6 cups of fresh basil, packed

2 cups of fresh parsley, packed

1 cup of lightly toasted pine-nuts

1 cup of freshly grated Romano Locatelli D.O.C. cheese

1/2 of one large lemon juiced

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon freshly grated Black pepper

14 small fresh cloves of garlic (ours are small from our garden)

1 cup of extra-virgin olive oil:

1. Place all the ingredients except for the olive oil in a food processor. Pulse until pureed.

2. Drizzle of olive oil while the food processor is pulsing.

3. Enjoy on some crackers, homemade bread, pizza, or pasta!

Bold Black-Eyed Pea Hummus



We had my husband’s colleagues over for a picnic yesterday. I had intentions of making my vibrant blackeyed pea salad; however, I cooked the beans too long in the pressure cooker. It was my first time cooking the black eyed peas in the pressure cooker.  Apparently they don’t take as long to cook as black beans. Well, I learned my lesson for the day. There seems to always be a lesson to be learned. Anyway, there is a positive to this food story,  the unintended outcome was this spicy black-eyed pea hummus. I was able to showcase some crispy fresh garden vegetables from my grandfather’s garden and also my favorite local markets as well.

Hummus goes well with so many foods, I like to add it on top of a pizza instead of marinara sauce. I also add it to my vegetarian BLTs, and I love it on my soft tortilla shells. My frequent go to with hummus is with fresh vegetables. I suggesting skipping the ranch and giving this creamy dip a try.  My favorite pairs are cherry heirloom tomatoes, kohlrabi, red bell peppers, and snap peas.

This recipe makes 30 ounces of hummus (plenty to share; even for us non-sharers )


1/2 cup Water

2 Tablespoons of fresh lemon juice

2 Tablespoons of balsamic vinegar

3 1/4 cup cooked black eye peas, (if canned make sure to buy low sodium and rinse well)

4 Tablespoons fresh chives

4-5  large of cloves of garlic, peeled

2 teaspoons of ground cumin, plus more for garnish (optional)

1 teaspoon of fajita seasoning

Tools: Vitamix Blender  (I have the Professional Series 750)

2 (2 cup capacity sealalbe containers to store the goods)


  1. In the order of the ingredient list, place all the ingredient items in the vitamix or blender. Place the lid on the attachment to secure.
  2. Select variable number one and gradually increase to number seven.
  3. Allow for all the ingredients to marry in the vessel for at least 1 minute. Use the vitamix wand to press the ingredients to the blades if necessary.
  4. Portion out the hummus in two separate containers. Sprinkle with fresh chives.






Classic Basil Pesto


Last year I was so jealous my sister had a beautiful bountiful basil plant. I had started it in a basket hanging basket for her for Mother’s Day but she took it out and planted it in her garden.  While mine remained in my basket hanger and barely grew a few inches. Her plant was beautiful! The first thing I taught her to make with her basil was pesto!! 
I learned my lesson this year I planted our basil plant in an herb garden. Wow this  year our basil plant is large and in charge, like my sister’s plant last year. I have made pesto a couple times this season. My husband loves it! So I thought I’d share the recipe this time. It is super simple. I plan on freezing some for the winter as well that is if it lasts.

It’s recipe yields about 1 1/2 cups of fresh pesto


4 cups of fresh basil

1/2 cup of lightly toasted pinenuts

1/2 cup of extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 cup of freshly grated Romano Locatelli D.O.C. cheese

1/2 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp freshly grated Black pepper 

7 small fresh cloves of garlic (ours are small from our garden)


1. Place all the ingredients except for the olive oil in a food processor. Pulse until pureed. 

2. Drizzle of olive oil while the food processor is pulsing.

3. Enjoy on some homemade bread or pasta!