As a food editor I get to taste a lot of, shall we say, interesting products. Top of my “interesting” list was camel milk, and it’s rare that I hear about other new foods or dishes that truly surprise me.
Then I received an email asking if I wanted to try egg nog hummus.
I love hummus, and I like egg nog, but this was one mash-up I was pretty skeptical about.
I discovered that the sweet spread is sold at The Hummus & Pita Co., a small New York City-based chain that specializes in Middle Eastern-style fast food. The restaurant primarily sells savory dishes, but also has a line of dessert hummus including chocolate chip, cake batter, and brownie batter flavors.
Since I’m game for just about anything (did I mention the camel milk?), The Hummus & Pita Co. sent over samples of the egg nog hummus, plus other sweet varieties, with thick cinnamon-and-sugar-dusted pita chips for dipping. In the spirit of the season I invited a few colleagues to sample the sweet spread. The verdict?
Not bad. Not bad at all.
After my co-workers got over their initial confusion (and I’ll be honest, repulsion), curiosity got the better of them. The first bite was typically tentative, just a little hummus on a pita chip.
But most of us were pleasantly surprised. “Sweet” was the overwhelming first response, and it’s true, this seasonal hummus tastes pretty darn sugary. We agreed that while the dip tasted lightly spiced, the egg nog flavor didn’t shine through as strongly as we were expecting. The texture was fine, not gritty like hummus sometimes is. We unanimously agreed that the pita chips, while delicious are their own, were too sugary for such a sweet dip. Graham crackers or apple slices would be a better choice.
One editor called it “sweet and decadent”. Another said, “I don’t believe this is hummus. It’s good.” Another: “I’m confused. It’s sweet, but it’s hummus.”
Some were less convinced. A beauty editor described the texture as a “strange almond butter-like consistency", which actually makes sense when you check out the ingredient list. Another pronounced it “weird”.
But the prevailing view seemed to be a pleasant confusion. As one of my colleagues said, going in for another bite, “I don’t want to think about it too much.”
So egg nog hummus! Not gross. Sweet, but not super egg noggy. Yes, it does feel unusual to eat a dessert hummus, but it’s definitely a conversation starter.
Want to serve egg nog hummus to your family and friends this holiday season? The Hummus & Pita Co. only operates in New York City at the moment. While it has plans to expand nationally soon, it won't be in time for you to buy this hummus before Christmas. In the meantime, we scored their recipe. You’re welcome, and happy holidays!
Egg Nog Hummus
1¾ cups egg nog
2 quarts or 3½ lbs. cooked chickpeas
13 oz. almond butter
1 cup rolled oats
1 lb. brown sugar
½ tsp salt
½ baking soda
Jenna Helwig is the senior food editor at Parents. Follow her on Instagram.