Saturday, December 31, 2005

Hummus

There are tons of variations on hummus, but this recipe is pretty much ye olde classic. It comes out so much better than what you can buy at the grocery or deli... at about 1/5th of the price!

The recipe calls for Tahini, which is Middle Eastern sesame paste. Health food stores, Middle Eastern groceries, and even some large chain groceries have started to sell it. It needs to be stirred well before you use it. If for some reason you can't find tahini, or you don't have it on hand, simply use an equivalent amount of toasted sesame seeds. Put them into the food processor first and crush 'em up good.

The dried chickpeas take longer than the canned but you'll get a much better hummus with them.

Ingredients
1 cup dried chickpeas (or about 2-3 cups canned)
1 bay leaf
1 small onion
2 cloves (optional)
2-3 cloves garlic
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup tahini
1 teaspoon salt
10 sprigs Italian parsley
olive oil
Pinch ground cumin
Dash soy sauce or miso paste (optional)

1. Pick through and rinse the dried chickpeas and then soak them in a bowl of water to cover overnight or for at least 8 hours.

2. Drain, rinse and then put them in a pot with just enough water to cover. Peel and cut the onion in half, sticking one clove deep into each onion half. Throw the onion into the pot along with the bay leaf.

3. Bring the contents of the pot to a boil over medium heat and then reduce the heat to low, cooking until the chickpeas are very soft. This could take anywhere from thirty minutes to two hours or longer depending on your chickpeas.

4. Drain the chickpeas--reserving some of the cooking liquid--but removing the bay leaf, onion and cloves.

5. Put the lemon, tahini and garlic in the bowl of a food processor and process until the mixture is thoroughly combined and aerated. It will sort of resemble cream cheese.

6. Add the chick peas, the salt, and about 1/4 cup of the cooking liquid. Taste, and then correct the seasonings with more salt, lemon juice, broth, soy sauce or even miso unil you have the hummus at a taste and consistency you like. It's best to let the flavors meld for an hour or two at room temperature before serving.

7. Spread hummus on a plate and make a dimple in the center. Fill the dimple with a couple tablespoons of olive oil and then sprinkle in the ground cumin. Garnish with kalamata olives and chopped parsley. Serve with toasted pita bread.

2 Comments:

Anonymous Jenny said...

Hummus Rocks!! It's so cheap and yummy.

10:46 AM  
Anonymous Mark said...

What a great blog! Thanks for doing it.

4:43 PM  

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