Sunday, December 12, 2010

Homemade Hummus

I never buy hummus at the store anymore because it's so easy to make at home.  Plus, it's stinkin' expensive at the store.  And when you make it at home, you can control the amounts of fat and sodium going into it.

If you've never had hummus or you consider it a food for adventurous freaks, give it a shot today.  Hummus is so much better for you than most other vegetable dips.  Hummus is full of fiber, gets good fat from the olive oil, and even gives you protein from the beans.

So here it is.  Hummus, by the way, is not an exact science.  Taste it along the way, adjust your seasonings or ingredients accordingly, and proceed with pride that you're conquering this delicious, healthful dip.

Now I didn't do a History of Hummus before sitting down to tell you about it.  So I don't know if I'm committing a cardinal sin by putting great northern beans in my hummus, and still calling it hummus.  I think chickpeas are the original bean.  So I apologize.

My rationale - 1, I only had 1 can of chickpeas; 2, my food processor is too big for a 1-can batch; and 3, I like the way great northern beans give the hummus a smoother texture than chickpeas alone do.

Drain and rinse your 2 cans of beans and deposit them in your food processor.

Crush 2 cloves of garlic and add them to the beans.

Swirl a big spoonful of tahini out of the jar and onto the beans.  Taste it while you're at it.  Yum - nutty and earthy!

Add a big pinch of salt and some freshly ground black pepper.

Squeeze half your lemon in and begin to spin!  I like to chop everything together a bit before I start to drizzle in olive oil.  Add about 1/4 cup of water.  Squeeze in the rest of your lemon.  Spin it.  Spin it.  Add more olive oil.  This is a recipe that's heavy on the olive oil, so when you think you've added enough - well, add a little more.

When your hummus is ready, it should have a creamy, smooth texture.  Taste it with your finger; now's the time to adjust seasoning if you need to.

Use a spatula to get all that good stuff into a container you can seal and stick in the fridge.

I plan on eating my homemade hummus all week - with carrots, with crackers, with cheese, with celery.  In the summer I spread it on sandwiches and wraps.  I'd suggest serving it with a little Sriracha sauce on the side.  Its garlicky, nutty flavor is delicious on its own, but the spicy Sriracha really makes it something to look forward to.

You can find Sriracha sauce in the Asian aisle of your grocery store, or online at Asian Food Grocer.

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