Hummuna, hummuna, hummus!

It's been about four years since I've eaten red meat and almost 20 years since I've consumed an animal with feathers (chicken, turkey, duck, quail, dove, pheasant, you get the idea—it's a long story), although in the last year I have been known to enjoy a grilled, fennel-laden Italian sausage, as well as other tasty pork items on occasion. I mean, what sane person could really give up bacon?

So I get protein from either seafood, beans or egg whites. And I love hummus. It's a great "go-to" for a quick snack or a veggie sandwich. But the truth is, I don't like the store bought stuff...it just doesn't taste right.

After making countless hummus recipes and never being quite thrilled with the results, I was excited when I came across this recipe in a food industry magazine I subscribe to called Restaurants & Institutions. The University of San Francisco's Executive Chef Steve Hakim provided the recipe and it makes 4 quarts...but, have no fear, I have revised it for personal use.

It's, by far, the best homemade hummus I've ever eaten and after a long day (or, in my case, a long weekend), it's something I can whip up and enjoy in less than 10 minutes.

Buen provecho!


Hummus

I absolutely love this hummus recipe. And I love that you can add different ingredients to jazz it up, depending on your mood or what you'll serve it with. You could add roasted red peppers or just a half a red pepper, half a jalapeno (no seeds, please), black olives, sun-dried tomatoes, herbs or even artichokes, as suggested by a customer and friend. Of course, if you do add other flavors, you might want to eliminate the chili powder, or not. It is important, however, that you try and find garbanzos with "no salt added" so you can control the sodium.

Print Recipe

1-15-oz. can garbanzo beans (I buy the Whole Foods' 365 brand with no salt)
1/3 cup liquid from the garbanzo beans, reserved
1 1/2 Tablespoons organic sesame tahini (I use the Arrowhead Mills brand, and organic is optional)
1-2 Tablespoons EVOO (extra virgin olive oil), and then a few glugs to drizzle on top before serving
1 garlic clove, or 2 if you are a garlic lover, or none if you so choose
1 lemon, juiced (you may need more, depending on how juicy—or not—the lemon is)
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
Paprika and more EVOO, for garnish

Open the can of garbanzo beans and drain, reserving 1/3 cup of the liquid. Rinse the beans well and let drain completely.

In a food processor, blend beans about 10 seconds, until they are broken. Add tahini, lemon juice, reserved juice from the beans, garlic, olive oil, cumin, chili powder and salt and puree until the consistency is smooth. Taste and decide whether you need to add a little more olive oil, lemon or salt...I generally add a bit more of each of these.

Remove hummus from the food processor. Add a grind or two of fresh black pepper, sprinkle a little paprika for color and add a nice glug of olive oil.

Serve with carrot sticks, cucumber chunks, pita chips, crackers or whatever you have on hand. This also makes a great veggie sandwich.

It will keep in the refrigerator for up to one week. If it lasts that long.
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