Hummus and Kale on Baked Sweet Potatoes

 

Baked potatoes are the perfect vehicles for hummus and kale, the two ingredients that I need to cook more, use more and improve upon. After reading “How to make hummus: kitchen notes from a chickpea pedant,” to settle the debate on what should be included in a hummus recipe, I was inspired and made a big batch of hummus following this Ottolenghi’s formula. This basic hummus is essential to my living pantry.

Meanwhile, fresh kale from the farmers’ market looks so fantastic, green and ravishing, I want to put it in every dish I make. Smooth homemade hummus together with the fresh kale sealed the deal for me to make this Donna Hay dish, bringing everything together, in the week when Hay is the featured chef at IHCC. This dish highlights perfectly the signature style of Donna Hay: contemporary, simple yet sophisticated.

Baked sweet potatoes are easy enough to do. Even with dried chickpea, a big bowl of hummus can be simply put together without much fuss. Just give it some time to simmer until tender. Then there is the sweet caramelized onion that “makes everything taste better,” according to my husband. The most tricky part of the dish is the crispy kale which requires tossing with salt, pepper and olive oil and then baking in a 400°F oven for 8 to 10 minutes. The margin for error is rather small. It takes me two trials to get the crispy texture I wanted, through and through. I believe the key is to get very fresh kale. Anything less than the freshest kale makes for an unevenly browned and chewy, instead of light and crunchy, kale chips after about a 10-minute bake. Stand by and watch carefully during the last few minutes in the oven. Kale chips, done right, can be addictive.

Not long ago, I bought a bag of kale chips from the store. They lacked the crispy texture and the flavor was off putting. The bag languished in the cupboard, uneaten and unloved. I was hoping to redeem the less-than-desirable kale chips experience with a better homemade version. After making it in my own kitchen, I’m convinced that baked crispy kale is a world away from anything commercially available and simply cannot be packaged in a bag. They are too fragile, too ephemeral to be bagged.

One thing for sure, I’m more than pleased to have found and made a super smooth version of hummus and topped it with some delectable crispy kale, and served on baked sweet potatoes. They make an exciting as well as whimsical centerpiece of a seriously substantial meal with meat, fish or vegetable.

Ingredients: dried chickpea, baking soda, tahini, lemon juice, garlic and water

 

Easier to get evenly crisped kale leaves with baby kale

 

 

Perfectly crisped kale leaf

 

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8 Comments

  • Reply
    Lydia Filgueras
    June 7, 2016 at 2:05 pm

    I've used chickpeas as a topping for baked potatoes, never thought to take it to the next step and use hummus. Great idea and I love the crispy kale on top!

  • Reply
    flour.ish.en
    June 7, 2016 at 4:23 pm

    I like to find more ways to use hummus. Crispy kale is very easy to make, once you get the ingredient and timing right. It adds elegance to any dish.

  • Reply
    kitchen flavours
    June 10, 2016 at 1:15 pm

    I got to try to make crispy kale soon! How delicious to bite into crispy kale! I agree with your hubby on the sweet caramelized onions, they are my favourite too. Delicious tray of sweet potatoes, all the level of ingredients looks perfectly delicious together!

  • Reply
    Zosia
    June 12, 2016 at 10:51 am

    Ottolenghi's hummus is my go-to recipe. I would never have thought to use it to top sweet potatoes but the combination sounds fabulous, especially with the onions and kale.

  • Reply
    Kim
    June 12, 2016 at 5:56 pm

    I eyed this recipe closely and nearly chose it for myself! I think kale chips, done right, are somewhat magical. They can be incredibly delicious and addictive! This is not only a healthy dish, but so very pretty and appealing. I know I would love it!

  • Reply
    Deb in Hawaii
    June 12, 2016 at 7:02 pm

    I love everything about this recipe. I make hummus almost weekly (using many of Ottolenghi's tips) and use it in a variety of ways. The mixing of the sweet, creamy, and crispy textures here is magical and as lovely to look at as I imagine it would be to eat. Great job! 😉

  • Reply
    Claudia
    June 12, 2016 at 8:20 pm

    When I originally saw this recipe it didn't sound too appealing, but now it makes sense – the kale is crispy. What a great combination of textures and flavors.

  • Reply
    flour.ish.en
    June 12, 2016 at 9:00 pm

    I am certainly sticking with this hummus recipe as my go-to.

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