Hummus or chickpea dip has become widely available at supermarkets here in the United States. You’ll find different variations of hummus, such as hummus with roasted red peppers, toasted pin nuts, garlic or even cumin added to the spread. But here is the “real deal.” The classic traditional hummus is one with nothing but chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice and salt. You should be able to taste the flavor of the chickpeas and nothing else. Another important point I’d like to make is that the texture of the hummus should be creamy and not coarse. It should feel creamy and smooth when you scoop it with a piece of pita bread.
Skill level: Easy
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Traditional “Lebanese” Appetizer
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- 1 (16 oz) bag dry garbanzo beans
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt for cooking
- 1 cup tahini
- 1/2 cup lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup reserved liquid
- Olives, parsley, red pepper, olive oil (garnish options)
- Place the dry garbanzo and baking soda in a bowl.
- Add enough water to cover the beans by about 2 inches.
- Leave to soak overnight.
- The next day, rinse the beans once.
- Place in a 7 quart saucepan and add enough water again to cover the beans by about 2 inches.
- Cover leaving the lid slightly open, add the salt, and bring the water to a boil on high heat.
- Let it boil for about 5 minutes then lower heat to medium and continue to cook for about 1 hour, or until the chickpeas are soft and skin peels off easily.
- Turn heat off and leave to cool.
- Reserve about 1 cup of the cooking liquid.
- Drain the chickpeas and peel off the skin. (see note #1 below)
- In a food processor add the chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice and salt.
- Process and gradually some of the reserved liquid.
- The consistency should be soft enough that you can pick up with pita bread.
- 1. Yes, this step if time consuming yet well worth the effort. This is what will make the hummus creamy and smooth.
- 2. You can make the hummus ahead of time and freeze it in resealable freezer bags.
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