When it comes to doing life, I most definitely do not, I repeat DO NOT, have it all figured out. I work from home. And I work in a rather unorganized way. Much of the time there are 15 windows open on my screen, five different Word documents going, each with the beginnings of a story, email drafts pulled up and half responded-to, and a laundry list of to-dos that most definitely get lost in the shuffle. Often I work and work until I suddenly realize it is 4 p.m. and I have yet to eat, still not feeling like I accomplished anything. This is normally when I rummage through the pantry and find myself snacking on my son’s cinnamon Life cereal, or if I’m lucky, some Marcona almonds.
For someone who is meant to embody healthy eating and who has been known to whip up a delicious meal in moment’s notice—these are precisely the moments when I feel like a fraud. I see my contemporaries throwing together these beautifully vibrant veggie-focused lunches and that whomp-whhhhhomp moment of, “I’m doing it all wrong” creeps in.
Come on now, Athena, pull it together! So, nowadays when I find myself in this situation, my newest and favorite I’m-a-mess-and-forgot-to-make-lunch kinda meal is beetroot hummus and pita. This dip was inspired by Nigel Slater’s genius recipe, which I discovered via Susan Spungen’s Instagram feed. It has become my saving grace. It is super easy to make—roast the beets, toss ‘em in the food processor, and whip to your heart’s content. It’s earthy, creamy, and flavorful with the nutty tahini and tangy lemon, and it offers a solid dose of antioxidants and veggies to sustain me for hours. One batch can get me through three to four days, it probably goes without saying that it is far superior to my usual kiddie cereal lunch—and it holds up in the fridge perfectly.
An added bonus? With the vibrant shocking pink of the beets, the dish is beautiful and swoony enough for guests too—she’s a win win. The spiced seed and nut dukkah adorns the silky hummus, taking it to textural superstardom. This one’s on repeat. Give it a go.
Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees. Remove the stems from the beets and rinse the beet bulbs. Seal the beets in aluminum foil and place on a sheet pan. Roast the beets for approximately 1 hour. Rinse the chickpeas. When beets have cooled, pinch the skin with a paper towel to remove the skin.
Transfer the beetroot, garlic, and chickpeas to a food processor and process to a smooth purée. Mix in the tahini, olive oil and lemon juice, then taste for seasoning, adding salt and pepper if required.