Have you ever had muhummara?
No? Yah, I’m not surprised. Muhummara is a bit like Cinderella – pushed to the side by the hummus and tabouli stepsisters. But with a wave of a gluten-free gal’s magic wand, muhummara can be the star of the meal.
It’s difficult to describe muhummara. Like hummus, it’s a dip that is delicious on pita bread, crackers and wraps. Unlike hummus, the flavor of muhummara is bright and tart, with a hint of sweet as well. It is really one of those dishes that does not taste like its individual ingredients. It’s a perfect dish for picnics and potlucks, as it improves as it sits overnight in the fridge. But, bring it up to room temperature for serving.
It’s also perfect for hot summer evenings, as there’s not a lot of actual cooking involved. Toasting some California walnuts and cumin and roasting a red pepper are the only hot jobs.
If you’re lucky enough to have a gas stove, you can roast the pepper directly on an open flame. Turn it over an open flame until the skin is blackened all over, then place it in a brown paper bag for about 10 minutes. The steam from the pepper will loosen the skin. You should be able slide all the charred skin right off. Don’t rinse the pepper in water – you’ll lose a lot of the flavor in the oil you wash off.
1 roasted red pepper, seeded
2 T. gluten-free bread crumbs (I used gluten-free pretzels whirled in a coffee grinder.)
1/2 cup California walnuts, toasted
1 heaping t. cumin, toasted
1 T. olive oil
1 T. pomegranate molasses
1/2 T. tomato paste
1/2 t. salt
1 t. fresh lemon juice
1 small clove garlic, minced
Toss all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until well-mixed. You want some texture left, so don’t over-process. Let stand for 20 minutes before eating. Lasts about a week in the fridge. Garnish with some more walnuts and a drizzle of olive oil.