Saturday, June 15, 2019

Chickpeas for Dessert: Delicious Trend? Or Disastrous Failure?

Dessert Hummus - Aldi
Dessert hummus invaded fancy grocery store shelves a while ago, and now this trend has trickled it's way down to Aldi. When I first heard of the concept my knee-jerk reaction was that this was a bad idea. Like most people I enjoy hummus, but I've only ever had it in a savory sense, mixed with garlic or roasted red pepper (my fav!), and taking that savory-familiarity and turning it towards desserts just wasn't clicking in my brain. 
Then again, plain hummus is pretty bland, maybe it could be doctored into a passable dessert?  After all, there are all those black bean brownie recipes floating around online that people swear by, but I personally haven't had the guts to ruin perfectly good brownies to find out for myself. Maybe this will be my gate-way health-food dessert? 
Against my better judgement, I grabbed one of each flavor and put them out on cheese plate night for my family to try. This is the result... 
So, what do you serve with dessert hummus? I ended up using fresh strawberries, some graham crackers, and those cracker-pretzel hybrid chips. I put those out, along with both vanilla bean and chocolate hummus dips and let my family have at it. They were hesitant to say the least. 
At a glance, the chocolate looks a lot more appetizing than the vanilla. The chocolate is a dense frosting-looking mixture that is an opaque brown color, while the vanilla? It's almost ghostly. There is this translucent gray coloring to the mixture mixed with, what I assume to be, flecks of vanilla bean. Like a little tub of (supposedly) edible concrete. They also smell a It's like sniffing a tub of frosting mixed with the fresh scent of vegetables. There isn't a specific vegetable aroma, or any savoriness, it's that watery fresh scent that you experience in the produce aisle after those water misters have given everything a light shower. It's oddly refreshing, but it's definitely not making me hungry. 
I had to go first to prove it was safe for consumption. I grabbed the pretzel crackers since I thought the saltiness might compliment the sweetness of the dip, since the chocolate one did look like frosting, but the results were incredibly bland. 
Super bland. It looks like frosting, but tastes like next-to-nothing. It's more texture than anything else. The texture screams hummus, and the flavor whispers "sad chocolate." When eaten with the strawberry, the chocolate flavoring shines a bit brighter, having a light hot-cocoa-packet kind of taste, but it's fleeting and you have to eat a giant glob of it to experience anything. Which isn't worth it.  
Shockingly, the vanilla version was more flavorful, and had less calories. The vanilla version has the same, almost gritty, hummus texture but it has a faint vanilla pudding flavoring to it which is more tolerable than the chocolate, since you can actually taste something, but it's still not worth the calories.  This one also fared a bit better with the fresh fruit, but it still wasn't dessert-worthy. 
Once they knew it was safe my family jumped in, and quickly jumped back out. It was just too "sad" tasting, and like me, they were shocked that the chocolate version, which looked so-much like cake frosting, tasted like a slightly sweet nothing. 
You guys know I hate wasting money, after we all gave it a shot, and it failed horribly, these went right into the trash. Hummus has no place at the dessert table! Have you tried any of these healthy desserts? Do any of them work? (Like those black bean brownies?)
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