Sometimes I just want hummus. And fresh bread. And sometimes, just sometimes, I have time to make both. I’m just lazy, and while dried chickpeas are 800x cheaper than canned, and more sustainable (less packaging), I always forget to soak them overnight. But this time I remembered! The past few Vegetable Husband boxes have had super cute bunches of small carrots, and remembering SusanV’s awesome looking carrot hummus, I knew I wanted to make it. But hummus requires bread! D&T posted this recipe for honey oat bread awhile ago and it had me drooling. So, doing what I do best, I snagged the recipes from these talented people’s blogs and whipped up a time-intensive but oh-so-worth it snack.

The poet prefers his hummus to be super garlicy and olive oily, but with the carrot version I wanted to go clean and cool. I didn’t add any oil, just water, and I didn’t add any tahini or spices. Personally, I love the taste. Clean, carroty, and very light and fluffy. I added more water than Susan called for, but it was bit by bit, so I don’t know the total amount. I think that would depend on how watery your carrots are.

Speaking of the poet, he offered to take me to The Hostel In the Forest’s Food, Farming, and Nutritional Healing Retreat in March for my birthday! I’m so stoked–the workshops include vegan cooking, gluten-free baking (something I’ve always wanted to dabble in), fermentation, bread-making, urban gardening, composting, and etc. Too much goodness in one weekend! We’re staying in the “Turtle Room” because the tree houses are full, but how cute is that name?  We’re actually going to spend March 1-3 down there too for Spring break, so I’ll have a recap of those days before the retreat.  How I love good people, good food, and forests!

Agave Oat Bread & Carrot Hummus

Agave Oat Bread

from Wish I Were Baking

To prepare the oatberries:
1 C Oatberries
4 C Filtered Water

For the initial proofing of the yeast:
3 C Filtered Water
1 Tbsp Yeast
1 Tbsp Brown Sugar

For the bread itself:
1/4 C Agave Nectar
1 C Oat Bran
1 C Flax Seeds
2 tsp Salt
1/4 C Vital Wheat Gluten
1 tsp vanilla extract
Whole Wheat Flour – have a 5lb sack on hand

For the final forming of the loaves:
Rolled Oats
Olive Oil

Boil your oatberries until they have absorbed all of the water they’re going to. Be careful, as they’ll boil over if covered. You could steam them, if you had a steamer, in which case reduce the amount of water to 2 cups and steam for 45 minutes.

After the oatberries have cooked, remove from heat and let cool while you’re proofing your yeast.

Heat 1 cup of your water until nearly boiling, add 2 cups of cool / room-temperature water, and mix in sugar and yeast. Let this stand until yeast gets nice and bubbly (around 10 minutes or so).

Combine oatberries, yeast ferment, agave, flax seeds, oat bran, and vanilla.

Mix thoroughly, then add in enough flour to get a good dough going, mixing with a spatula until you are able to knead it.

Knead until you feel like your arms will fall off or until the dough won’t easily absorb any more flour. Set aside in a reasonably warm place until more than doubled in size (about 2 hours).

Gently knead for a minute or so, just to distribute the yeast again (it’s been sitting in there, eating, and is probably close to starving by now, and may have reproduced; it doesn’t have any legs, either, so you have to take it to the food).

Separate into 3 equal sized balls. Form into loaves (I only formed one loaf in a bread pan, the other 2/3 of the dough I formed into a free-form loaf on a baking sheet). Oil your pans well. Place loaves into pan. Liberally sprinkle the rolled oats over the tops, and then … perform something of the sort of action one usually performs with an omlette, tossing the loaf pan about so that the bread rotates through the oats.

Let rise until more than doubled in size (1 hour).

Bake at 300F until internal temperature tests to greater than 195F (or until you think it’s done).

Remove to wire racks immediately and let cool thoroughly before slicing.

Carrot Hummus

from Fatfree Vegan Kitchen

1 cup carrots, peeled and sliced (about 2 medium carrots)
1/4 cup water (plus more if needed)
3 cloves garlic
1 cup chickpeas, pre-soaked, rinsed and drained
2 tbsps. fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp. salt, or to taste

On the stove or in the microwave, cook the carrots in the water, covered, until the carrots are just tender. Put the carrots, water, and garlic into the food processor and puree.

Add the chickpeas, lemon juice, and salt to the processor and puree until smooth.  (I added at least 1/4 cup more of water in order to make it fluffy and light.)

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