almond butter hummus with kale chips

has it really been a month since the pie challenge ended?  wow-time flew!  while i have been contemplating my next project, i have allowed myself to be totally sucked into the holiday madness.  the husband and i have both been busy with work-him way more than me, such is the life of the executive banquet chef for a university.  that has left me at home alone for more than a few meals.  when i am left to cook for myself, you can be pretty sure that it will not be an elaborate meal and it will most likely be vegetarian and quite possibly vegan.  
lately, without our girls at home(both are living elsewhere right now), we have taken to purchasing more organic produce and are shifting our diet towards less meat laden meals. as i have mentioned before, i have had a few blood tests come back with higher than normal levels of cholesterol.  thankfully, the highest number so far has been less than 220 but that doesn’t mean i shouldn’t be concerned.  a diet change that eliminated many dairy products has helped me get that number back down below 200 and i hope to keep it there.  
my recent obsession with the cookbook, appetite for reduction has given me a new weapon for my arsenal too.  that book is chock full of great vegan recipes that even a carnivore can find satisfying-providing they eat veggies, beans and grains.  while i do not plan to make the leap to a vegan diet, i am happy to say that i can easily eat vegan meals and not feel deprived.   darry is also learning to enjoy some of these changes and he recently experimented with some organic kale chips, a tasty addition to my favorite meal for one, hummus on crusty bread.  and before you say “hummus, how boring”  keep in mind that i never do anything boring-of course i have changed it up a bit!  i am not a huge fan of tahini; it tastes a little bitter to me and the level of saturated fat is high enough to cause me to think twice before consuming it.  so a thought occurred to me, what if i used unsweetened almond butter instead?  wow!!!  what a concept and what a difference-i am sold and will probably never reach for tahini again!
almond butter hummus with kale chips
yields about 1 1/2 cups hummus
1 (15oz) can of chick peas
4 tablespoons unsweetened almond butter
2-3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 teaspoons chopped garlic
salt-if desired
kale chips-purchase or home made (great recipe here)
baguette slices or other bread
drain the chickpeas but reserve the juice.  place all of the remaining ingredients into the bowl of a food processor with the drained chickpeas and pulse to combine.  scrape the bowl and run until it is smooth adding the reserved liquid as needed to reach the desired consistency.
to serve, top each of the baguette slices with a tablespoon or two of the hummus and top it off with a kale chip.  enjoy!!!
and if you would like to try this out, please do and remember that the pies are no longer the focus here but the power of pies will always be with me…