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Spice up holiday appetizers with fresh hummus

Recipe: Lime, cilantro and chilis flavor this easy dip

Serve this hummus among Thanksgiving appetizers or at any holiday party.

Serve this hummus among Thanksgiving appetizers or at any holiday party.

Kathy Morrison

Lime is not thought of as a Thanksgiving flavor. Yet my little lime tree is loaded with fruit this year, and it all seems to be ripening at once. 

I wanted a savory recipe using limes, and lucked into a cache of hummus recipes that I adapted for my limes and my family's fairly high tolerance of spiciness.

The recipe is easy, vegan, can be done ahead of time, and as an appetizer won't spoil anyone's hunger for sage or cinnamon or cranberries. It also won't supplant a family favorite while the cook tries something new.

Serve it with crackers or raw vegetables, and dig in while the rest of the meal is still cooking.

Lime-chili hummus with cilantro

Makes about 2 cups


One 15.5-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1 to 2 cloves garlic, minced

3 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons Chinese-style chili paste (or less, to taste)

1 tablespoon tahini (sesame paste)

1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro leaves, plus more for garnish

1 teaspoon ground coriander

Zest of 1 lime

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, or more as needed

Hummus ingredients
The hummus ingredients go together quickly.

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


Place the drained chickpeas, garlic and olive oil in a food processor or blender. Whir until the chickpeas are broken up and starting to become paste. Add the rest of the ingredients and blend to desired texture.

Taste the hummus and adjust the seasonings. Add a bit more lime juice if the texture is too thick.

Serve immediately with crackers or raw vegetables, or cover tightly and refrigerate until ready to serve. Again,  add a touch of lime juice if it has thickened up too much.


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Dig In: Garden Checklist

For week of Nov. 26:

Concentrate on helping your garden stay comfortable during these frosty nights – and clean up all those leaves!

* Irrigate frost-tender plants such as citrus in the late afternoon. That extra soil moisture increases temperatures around the plant a few degrees, just enough to prevent frost damage. The exception are succulents; too much water before frost can cause them to freeze.

* Cover sensitive plants before the sun goes down. Use cloth sheets or frost cloths, not plastic sheeting, to hold in warmth. Make sure to remove covers in the morning.

* Use fall leaves as mulch around shrubs and vegetables. Mulch acts as a blanket and keeps roots warmer.

* Stop dead-heading; let rose hips form on bushes to prompt dormancy.

* Prune non-flowering trees and shrubs.

* Clean and sharpen garden tools before storing for the winter.

* Brighten the holidays with winter bloomers such as poinsettias, amaryllis, calendulas, Iceland poppies, pansies and primroses.

* Keep poinsettias in a sunny, warm location – and definitely indoors overnight. Water thoroughly. After the holidays, feed your plants monthly so they’ll bloom again next December.

* Rake and remove dead leaves and stems from dormant perennials.

* Plant spring bulbs. Don’t forget the tulips chilling in the refrigerator. Daffodils can be planted without pre-chilling.

* This is also a good time to seed wildflowers and plant such spring bloomers as sweet peas, sweet alyssum and bachelor buttons.

* Plant trees and shrubs. They’ll benefit from fall and winter rains while establishing their roots.

* Set out cool-weather annuals such as pansies and snapdragons.

* Lettuce, cabbage and broccoli also can be planted now.

* Plant garlic and onions.

* Bare-root season begins now. Plant bare-root berries, kiwifruit, grapes, artichokes, horseradish and rhubarb.

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