I have only just started making hummus regularly. I waited so long because I was searching for the right tahini — and I finally found it! Tahini can really make or break your hummus because it is where a lot of the flavor comes from. I tend to dislike bitter things, which tahini can often be, but I found one that was just right for me – Karawan tahini from Nablus. It is DIVINE. You can even eat it plain, or just with some lemon juice and garlic. It’s ridiculous. But I digress….
There are a couple of little secrets to good hummus, particularly if you want smooth, thick hummus. First, you should skin your chickpeas, and second, you should mix together the tahini and lemon juice first, to make a sort of paste, before adding in anything else. With that in mind, here is my recipe which is based on a one pound bag of dried chickpeas. It makes about 7 cups worth of hummus. If you are using a 15 ounce can of chickpeas instead, just divide the recipe by 4.
1 lb (16 oz) bag dried chickpeas, soaked overnight, rinsed and drained
1 c tahini
1 c freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/3 c extra virgin olive oil
1 T salt
4 cloves garlic, minced
1. In a large pot, cover the chickpeas with enough water so that there is an inch or two of water above them. In a regular pot, bring to a boil and let simmer, covered, for about an hour or until tender. Or, in a pressure cooker, cook at 15psi for 12 minutes and allow pressure to naturally release. Reserve 1/2 c if the water, and drain the rest.
2. Skin the chickpeas. This is annoying but worth it. There are multiple ways to do it: 1) while the chickpeas are submerged in cold water, gently roll/press the chickpeas between your hands. The skins will float to the top. Drain. Repeat as necessary. 2) Place a layer of chickpeas between two tea towels and gently rub them together until the skins come loose. [There is also another method of toasting soaked and drained chickpeas in a teaspoon of baking soda before adding water and boiling them. I haven’t tried this yet but will update when I do!]
3. In a food processor, blend the tahini and lemon juice for one minute. Scrape down the sides as needed and run again for about one minute. The result will be a whipped, thick, white paste-like substance that is DELICIOUS. (Try it!)
4. Add oil, salt and garlic to the tahini mixture and blend for another minute or two until well blended. (Go ahead, taste it again. Another level of heaven reached.)
5. Add the chickpeas to the food processor and mix until well blended, 2 minutes or so. Scrape down the sides as needed. If the texture is too thick for you, add the reserved chickpea water, only 1 T at a time.
6. Taste it! If it’s not salty, garlicky, or lemony enough for you, add more! You’re the chef after all.
You can freeze this hummus, or it will keep for about a week in the fridge. You can garnish with some paprika and olive oil when serving. It won’t last long, I promise!