Hummus, the Middle Eastern delight. I love it. Long before I found out hummus was super easy to make, I bought it from stores. Some were delicious, others we not. Then one day I decided to make my own hummus. My first hummus was OK, but not great. But I continued to make it over and over again, each time playing with the amounts of ingredients, adjusting them and writing down the changes I did, and having the family taste test it.
Then one day—bingo! My hummus turned out better than before and the tastes were just right. Try it. And please say goodbye to store-bought hummus. You can make it yourself and trust me, no store brand will beat your own brand! This is a failproof recipe that will yield a smooth and creamy hummus, that can be prepared in no time and which only calls for a few ingredients to put it together. Enjoy!
Process the ingredients until smooth.
Pack the hummus onto a plate and swirl the top.
Drizzle with olive oil.
Sprinkle with paprika.
Serve with pita toasts. Enjoy!
Hummus with Pita Toasts
Serves about 6
Note 1: Instead of paprika, you can sprinkle your hummus with chopped fresh parsley or with toasted pine nuts.
Note 2: I often add a few tablespoons of plain yogurt to the hummus for a lighter color and creamier texture. Yogurt adds a refreshing taste, too. It is optional.
Note 3: Add a pinch of powdered cumin to your hummus for additional taste. It is also optional.
One 15-oz (425 g / 1 + 1/2 cups) can garbanzo beans (chickpeas) or 1/2 cup dried chickpeas, soaked overnight in cold water
2 large garlic cloves, peeled
3 tablespoons tahini
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
If using canned garbanzo beans, drain but reserve some of the liquid. You will use it later. Some canned chickpeas have a smoother skin, so it is optional to peel them (I personally never bother to peel).
If using dried chickpeas, boil them in a pot filled with water until tender, about 1 hour or so (some varieties cook longer than others). You should obtain about 1 + 1/2 cup cooked chickpeas. Drain, reserving some of the cooking liquid. You will use it later. If you want, peel off the skins of the cooked chickpeas, but it is not mandatory.
Place garbanzo beans, garlic, tahini, and lemon juice in a food processor. Process until pureed and smooth, adding some of the reserved juices from the can or some of the cooking liquid, to loosen the mixture. (If you, by mistake, threw the can juices or cooking liquid away, do not worry, add some water to the processor instead). Season with salt, to taste. Taste, and if you wish, adjust the amount of tahini, lemon and garlic, to taste.
Spoon the hummus onto a hummus plate (I bought mine from a Middle Eastern store – hummus looks beautiful on that place), or a regular shallow bowl. Level with a spoon, swirling the top with the back of the spoon. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle some paprika on top.
Serve with pita toasts (recipe follows).
Note: Instead of coarse salt you can use garlic salt for garlicky taste. Or, you can season the pita with Italian seasoning, or sprinkle dried herbs of your choice on top. You can also sprinkle them with Parmesan cheese.
Six 6-inch (15-cm) pita breads
1/3 cup olive oil
Preheat the oven to 400°F (205°C).
Brush one side of the pita rounds with the olive and sprinkle with salt. Cut each pita into 6 wedges.
Arrange the wedges in one layer on 2 baking sheets. Bake until golden and crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. Cool and serve with hummus.