Archive for September, 2009

The Secret of Hummus

September 27th, 2009 Leave a reply »

Hummus (also spelled humus, hommus, hummos, hummous) is a basic dish in Lebanese Mezza. You will most likely be served hummus as an appetizer at every local restaurant you go to in Lebanon. And it comes with all different toppings: grilled pine nuts, olives, roasted garlic. But there are ingredients to this terrific dish and here they are.
Estimated time: 20min
Servings: 4


Ingredients: 1 can of garbanzo beans (about 400g), 5 to 6 tablespoons of tahini (aka. sesame seed paste), 1/2 lemon, 2 garlic cloves, olive oil, salt

If you do not have access to fresh, uncooked chickpeas (aka. garbanzo beans), which is probably your case unless you live in the Middle East:
1. Place 1 can of prepared garbanzo beans in a pan. Add water to cover the beans. Bring to boil. You can find garbanzo bean cans at most supermarkets
2. Boil the beans for 10-15 minutes until soft. Drain the beans but keep the water used to cook them (you will need about 1/4 cup of water)
3. Transfer the beans into a food processor. Then add salt, 2 garlic cloves chopped into small pieces, and the ¼ cup of water used to cook the beans. Whizz the mixture into a smooth purée.
4. Press 1/2 lemon and add the juice to the mixture
5. Add 5 to 6 tablespoons of tahini and process the mixture again

Taste – if the mixture is too thick, add a little bit of water or lemon juice. If the mixture is too liquid, add a little bit of tahini, but do not worry: putting the hummus in the fridge will thicken it. **What to look for when you taste?** Make sure you taste the tahini, lemon juice & salt. The hummus shouldn’t be bland.

6. Transfer the hummus into a small plate or shallow bowl.

Garnish (any of the following):
- paprika
- cumin
- pine nuts (grilled/fried in a little bit of vegetable oil)
- garbanzo beans – if you remembered to keep some on the side
- chopped  olives
- garlic (fried in a little bit of vegetable oil)
- chopped sun dried tomatoes
- sliced radish

The Finale: drizzle over a generous amount of olive oil and eat with Arabic/pita bread.

Also check out these Nutritional Facts about Humus