At my house hummus is a staple food—there’s almost always a batch within reach. For a fun crudité platter, make a couple of versions: Add beets to one for a light pink hue, butternut squash to another for some cozy fall vibes. Serve with an array of fresh and roasted vegetables. See notes at bottom of recipe for beet and butternut roasting instructions.
MAKES 2–2½ CUPS
1½ cup chickpeas (cooked from dry or 1 (15½-ounce) can)
1 cup chopped roasted red beets or roasted butternut squash
½ cup tahini
1 teaspoon chopped fresh garlic (about 1 medium clove)
4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, plus more to taste
¼ cup iced water
½ teaspoon ground cumin, plus more to taste
Dash hot sauce (optional)
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
Olive oil, for serving
Put the chickpeas in a food processor fitted with a steel blade and pulse until coarsely puréed. Add the beets or squash, tahini, garlic and lemon juice and pulse to combine. With the motor running, slowly add the water as needed to thin the hummus (you might not need the whole amount). Blend for 1 to 2 minutes, until the hummus is completely smooth. Transfer to a bowl and stir in the cumin, hot sauce and salt. Taste and adjust seasoning. Serve at room temperature, drizzled with olive oil.
FOR ROASTED BEETS:
While you’ll only need 1 medium beet for the hummus, you might as well roast a batch while you have the oven on. Heat oven to 375°F and place beets in a baking dish. Add ¼-inch water and a drizzle of olive oil, shaking the pan to coat. Sprinkle with salt, cover with foil and roast until the beets are tender and can be poked through with the tip of a paring knife, 45 to 60 minutes. When cool enough to handle, peel one of the beets and roughly chop. Proceed with the hummus recipe.
FOR ROASTED SQUASH:
Heat oven to 375°F. Halve and seed a butternut squash and toss with ½ teaspoon olive oil and a pinch of kosher salt. Place cut side down on a baking sheet and roast for 30 to 35 minutes, until squash is tender. When cool, scoop the flesh from the skin and discard skin. Add ½ to ¾ cup flesh to the hummus. Reserve remaining squash for soup (or freeze it for later use).
LEIGH BELANGER is the food editor at Culture magazine. Her second book, My Kitchen Chalkboard, about streamlining dinnertime for busy families, will be released this coming fall. She lives in Jamaica Plain.