By now I think it's fairly obvious that I love chickpeas. I love chickpeas in salads. I love chickpeas in soup. And I especially love chickpeas as hummus.Rather funny then that I've never done a hummus recipe. Yet, I've made Bissara, a Moroccan dish similar to hummus, made of fava beans.
I like my hummus spreadable with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of cayenne pepper. Served on a small dish, not a bowl. Perhaps that's because that's how hummus was served at Pita Inn in Skokie, where I enjoyed many cheap meals during college. A small dish back then was only $1.50. Even today, it's only $1.85. The shawarmas were excellent as well. And as with many memories, the most vivid ones shape just how particularly I like it.
Tahini, the Middle Eastern sesame paste, is important for a really good hummus. But let's face it, tahini is expensive. And I rarely use it. So, ssshhhh, I usually omit it, or toss in some sesame seeds to be ground up in the puree. Cans of chickpeas are usually less than $1, so without the tahini, hummus is such a cheap meal. You can use dried chickpeas if you wish and this dish would be even cheaper.
1 15-oz can chickpeas, reserve liquid, or 1 cup dried and soaked overnight
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cumin
2 cloves garlic
Juice of 1 small lemon
1 tblsp tahini paste or sesame seeds
1 tblsp olive oil
1 tblsp water from chickpeas
For serving: Small drizzle of olive oil, a few sprinkles of paprika or cayenne
Open 1 15-oz can of chickpeas, reserving liquid in a separate bowl.
In a food processor, finely puree the chickpeas with 3/4 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp cumin, 2 cloves garlic, 1 tblsp tahini or sesame seeds, 1 tblsp olive oil, 1 tblsp chickpea water, and the juice of 1/2 lemon. Puree. Taste. Add more lemon juice if necessary if you like food more tart like I do. Add salt or more reserve chickpea liquid if needed.
Serve the hummus on a small dish with a drizzle of olive oil and a few sprinkles of cayenne pepper.
I especially love a simple sandwich of hummus inside a Middle Eastern flatbread with roast chicken. I adjusted my usual baked chicken recipe up a notch by making 40 cloves of garlic baked chicken and the sandwich was extra garlicky and oh-so-good.
Bissara (Moroccan Fava Bean Dip)
1 year ago today, Orange and Fennel Salad and mom's airline care packages.
2 years ago today, oregano and How to Dry Herbs.