Make it Naked

Roasted Carrot Hummus with Spiced Beef

Do other people think about food all the time? I do. Like it’s my job. But it’s not. I guess you’d call it a hobby. But do stamp collectors constantly think about stamps? Do people still collect stamps? What about knitters? Are they always thinking about yarn? Do they read 143 knitting blogs? Are there knitting blogs? I wouldn’t know. Unless they blog about eating and knitting. Then I’d know.

I’d like to think that if you’re reading this you might share my obsession. Tell me I’m not alone. Tell me it’s normal to go to a restaurant, have an amazing appetizer and think about nothing else. For a month. On the mind everyday for a whole month. Completely normal.

My sister, about a month ago, took me for gluten free pizza at Rustico. Not really knowing what to expect we started with an appetizer that caught our eye because it was different than anything we’d seen before. Carrot hummus with spiced lamb. Not only was it creative, it was absolutely amazing. And I haven’t stopped thinking about it since.

Creamy, smooth, sweet yet nutty. There was the potential for a babyfood-like mash-up but this was savory and flavorful. Ground lamb topped the hummus, spiced to perfection with just a little heat. Oh, and there was feta. Sold! A flavor combination that lingered in my head until I could unleash it here. You’re totally with me now. You want this. It’s on your mind. In your brain. Get it in your belly.

Roasted Carrot Hummus with Spiced Beef

Ingredients: For the hummus: 1lb carrots, peeled, chopped 1 small onion, quartered 2 cloves garlic, peeled 1 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, separated 1/2 teaspoon cumin, separated 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt 1/8 cup tahini For the spiced beef: 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil 1/2 lb ground beef (I used 93/7) 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 teaspoon paprika 1/2 teaspoon oregano 1/2 teaspoon cumin 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper Pinch of crushed red pepper (optional) Pinch kosher salt Freshly ground pepper

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to taste Garnish: 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese 1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, chopped Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Toss the carrots, onion and garlic with 1/2 tablespoon olive oil, 1/4 teaspoon cumin and 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt. Spread onto baking pan and roast until carrots are very soft and can be easily speared with a fork. About 35-45 minutes.
  2. Remove and let cool slightly. In a food processor, combine the carrots, onions, garlic, tahini, and 1/4 teaspoon cumin. Process until smooth.
  3. With processor running, drizzle in remaining tablespoon of olive oil.
  4. For the beef, add 1 teaspoon olive oil to frying pan and heat over medium high heat. Add the beef, garlic and seasonings. Cook until brown throughout.
  5. Plate the hummus adding the warm beef on top. Top with feta and chopped cilantro. Serve warm with pita chips, tortilla chips or a crusty baguette.


  1. Kudos to Rustico for accommodating my gluten free requests. The hummus was served with pita chips, but they brought me raw veggies for dipping instead. At home I had it with tortilla chips. Or a fork. Both worked nicely.
  2. I used ground beef because I melt in the rain and didn’t want to go to the store. It was just as good as the lamb and probably much cheaper. Use what you like. Leave the meat/cheese out completely and have yourself a delicious vegetarian/vegan dip.

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Posted on September 18, 2011

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