Almost everybody understands that whole, plant-based foods like vegetables and fruits are beneficial for health. And you know intuitively that living foods–such as sprouts–are even healthier. Yet you still draw a blank when it comes to preparing a healthy meal in a hurry.
Hummous–originally made with chickpeas or garbanzo beans–was one of my favorite foods long before I became vegan, and before Veganomicon author Isa Chandra Moskowitz poetically proclaimed the Middle-Eastern bean dip as being “like air for vegans”.
Recently, I’ve been making hummous with sprouted lentils and chickpeas instead of cooked, and while it tastes different–with a crispy-fresh bite, as you might expect–it’s still exotically delicious. Raw or cooked, hummous is easy to make, inexpensive, and keeps several days in the refrigerator, so you can make a big batch on the weekend and eat it all week long, as a dip or in sandwiches.
Unfortunately, most store-bought hummous is full of oil, salt, and other preservatives. With little to no oil, this recipe is low-calorie and nutrient dense. Lentils are one the best sources of protein, and one cup of raw lentils provides 26g of protein vs 18g for cooked lentils.
If you’ve made hummous with canned (pre-cooked) beans, this recipe may take slightly longer, but there’s no comparison in freshness and nutrition. For one thing, most canned beans and canned vegetables contain excessive amounts of sodium. If using, read the label to ensure the sodium (mg) is less than calorie count per serving.
Dried lentils and other beans for sprouting are available in bags or the bulk section of most natural supermarkets, and sprouting them takes only minutes and no special equipment (I use a regular colander). Enjoy a hummous sandwich on toasted sprouted whole grain bread (such as Ezekiel 4:9) with sliced tomato, avocado, red onion, and alfalfa sprouts.
When at home, open-faced sandwiches provide a more efficient delivery mechanism for lots of vegetable toppings. If you’re hitting the road, and need to pack a nutritious, protein-packed meal, a closed-faced sandwich holds everything together better.
Easy Sprouted Lentil Hummous Recipe (Low-oil)
3 cup lentils or chickpeas (garbanzo), sprouted
2 cloves pressed garlic (or less to taste)
1 t cumin powder
5-6 T lemon juice (2 fresh lemons)
1/4 cup sesame tahini (preferably raw)
1 T olive oil and/or water (optional)
salt to taste
Pulse all ingredients in a food processor until smooth, stopping to stir, and adding water or olive oil slowly as desired.