When I was a student in the Culinary Nutrition Expert course I quickly noticed that the underlying theme running throughout the entire 15 week course was Make Every Ingredient Count. I have always tried to choose ingredients that are health building but when you really stop to think about it, you can actually cater your health results by the ingredients that you choose.
Hummus is delicious for dipping veggies, spreading on crackers and using in place of mayo on a sandwich. I took my regular hummus recipe turned it into Powered Up Hummus with some exceptional health building ingredients.
Pumpkin Seeds: Excellent source of the bone building minerals phosphorus, magnesium and manganese. Pumpkin seeds have properties in their oils that have antimicrobial benefits.
Sunflower Seeds: Excellent source of Vitamin E. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that travels throughout the body to neutralize free radicals and specifically protects the cell membranes. Vitamin E also has a significant anti-inflammatory properties.
Zucchini: Adds an excellent source of dietary fiber which helps regulate blood sugar. Zucchini also provide vitamin A and C both of which have anti-inflammatory properties and boost immune function.
Avocado: Excellent source of essential omega-3 fatty acids that aids in cardiovascular function. Avocados help increase your absorption of fat soluble vitamins and antioxidants by as much as 400%! Avocados are loaded with anti-inflammatory components.
Ginger: Contains wonderful anti-inflammatory properties especially for the joints and the colon. Helps maintain normal blood circulation and improves the body’s ability to absorb essential nutrients.
Powered Up Hummus
2 cloves garlic, peeled
1/2 cup water*
1 1/2 cups cooked garbanzo beans (or 1 can rinsed and drained)
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 cup raw pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup raw sunflower seeds
1 Tbsp. tahini
1 medium zucchini, sliced
3 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp. paprika
1 1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. ginger root, grated
*3 Tbsp. garlic water
In a small sauce pan bring the 1/2 cup water to a boil, add in the garlic and boil uncovered for 3 minutes. Take garlic out of water and set aside to cool. Reserve water.
In a food processor combine all ingredients and process until smooth.
Transfer to a serving bowl and serve with veggies or crackers.