Recipe: Hummus

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Hummus is way more versatile than it gets credit for. Not only does it make the most epic dip for carrots or crackers, it also serves as a good spread in burgers, sandwiches and wraps. I love having it alongside guacamole when I make nachos and also whenever we have pitas. Hummus creates the foundations for a healthy and filling snack, so I always like to have some on hand so that I can’t make unhealthy excuses to myself. Making it is not that hard. I always need to plan ahead as I need to soak my chickpeas before cooking, but if you have canned chickpeas on hand then it can be as spontaneous as you like. There are so many variations of hummus to be had (for example adding roasted capsicum or beetroot) but for this recipe I have kept it simple – making it easy to build from there.

When I was learning about making hummus, my research informed me that the type of tahini you use matters. Fortunately, the only tahini I have ever really bought seems to be a good one and I’ve had no problems. I think the key is to make sure that it’s of a decent quality, ideally from the Middle East or somewhere, and without extra add-ins. I have noticed that some hummus is so much better than others. My favourite is when it’s light and fluffy, with flavours that don’t just ring of tahini. I like to be able to sense the garlic, lemon and the cumin too.

One advantage of cooking the chickpeas yourself is that you can ensure they are as mushy as you want them. Sometimes, chickpeas from the cans can be slightly under-cooked, meaning that it is hard to get them to a creamy smooth texture. A possible solution to this is cooking the chickpeas from the can for about 20 minutes, just to make sure that they are cooked adequately to ensure the greatest hummus! Try cooking with a teaspoon of baking soda, which will deshell the chickpeas. Just make sure you rinse them under water before using them in hummus. Let’s get started!

Collect

  • 1 can chickpeas or 1.5 c of cooked chickpeas
  • 1/2 t baking soda (for canned chickpeas)
  • 1/4 c lemon juice
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • sea salt, to taste
  • 1/2 c tahini
  • 3 T ice water, more as needed (icy water seems to work better, so I recommend it)
  • 1/2 t ground cumin
  • 1 T extra virgin olive oil
  • Garnish of your choosing: olive oil, paprika, chopped parsley or nuts

Create

  1. In a medium pot, add the chickpeas and baking soda. Cover with water and then boil for about 20 minutes. We want to see signs that the skins are falling off. Drain the chickpeas and rinse under cold water.
  2. In a food processor, combine the lemon juice, garlic and salt. Blend (or if there is not enough substance, stir) well. Leave the mixture to rest so that the lemon can soften the pungency of the garlic.
  3. Add the tahini to the food processor. Add 2 T of ice cold water. Scrape down the sides of the food processor and blend until the mixture is smooth and creamy. It should lighten in colour. If it is still too thick, add more water, a tablespoon at a time.
  4. Add the cumin and the chickpeas. Blend. Add the olive oil. Keep blending until the texture is as you like it. Again, if it is still too thick, add more water. Keep blending for approximately 2 minutes so that it is fluffy.
  5. Taste and add salt or lemon if necessary. Scoop the hummus into a bowl and garnish. The hummus will last about a week in the fridge, covered.

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