Thursday, February 12, 2009

Hummus (Humus)

One of the most famous Mediterranean foods is hummus. Hummus has become so popular in America, it is very accessible in regular supermarkets. It is sold already prepared in small tubs. I still think homemade hummus is the best. This dish can be a perfect appetizer or a nice lunch full of nutrients.

In my household in Turkey, hummus is rarely prepared for some reason. Maybe my mother does not like hummus much; I really don't know. Although, it is prepared and consumed all over Turkey. My husband’s family prepares it very frequently though. Therefore, my husband actually made this dish (his second time). I had never made hummus myself, as I was not a big fan, however I am very much liking it now. This was prepared on a cooking get together with friends mentioned in the previous post. Of course the whole thing was a collaborative effort, as I boiled the chickpeas and our friends peeled them. My hubby was the one who determined the ingredients and completely decorated it himself without my help (except the crackers). I think he has acquired better decoration skills than myself!

You can decorate hummus with tomatoes, with olives and various spices. It is all up to you. Depending on your taste, you may increase or decrease the amount of tahini. Some people like hummus with more tahini and some like it with less. As you are adding the tahini, taste the hummus until you acquire the right taste for your palates.

Note: You do not have to peel the chickpeas; they will still taste good and will be pureed smoothly even with the peel. I tried it recently with the peel after writing this recipe and it worked well. To my surprise, the hummus was very smooth even without peeling the chickpeas.

2 cups dried chickpeas
1 cup tahini (or ½ cup depending on how much you like tahini)
5-6 garlic cloves
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp salt
½ tsp paprika
9-10 black olives for garnishing
10-15 crackers for garnishing
2-3 sprigs fresh parsley
1/3 cup hot water

Soak the chickpeas overnight in a deep bowl full of water. The next day, pour the water out and wash the chickpeas. Place the chickpeas in a large pot and cover with water. Boil for about an hour or until the chickpeas are soft but not mushy. Run the chickpeas under water and cool. Peel the skins of the chickpeas (if you prefer). After boiling, the skin of the chickpeas will come out easily. All you have to do is take each chickpea and give it a gentle scrub between your thumb and forefinger. The skin will come off easily.

Put the chickpeas, the garlic and the salt in a food processor. Process until the mixture is pureed adding the hot water gradually in order to create the right texture. Pour the water from the feed tube. After the chickpeas are pureed add the tahini in the processor with the chickpeas. Once everything is integrated, spread the hummus in a large flat plate with a spatula. Drizzle olive oil on top by making a circular shape with the oil drizzle. Sprinkle some paprika and decorate with parsley and black olives. Place the crackers around the round plate and serve at room temperature. The beauty of this dish is that you may decorate it any way you like. There is no limit to the decoration.

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Anonymous said...

wow wow wow!harika! compliments to your hubby! I have never seen such a beautifully decorated hummus plate in my life!
Looks deeelicious!What I have heard about the peels is that they are removed because they cause the hummus to be heavier to digest.They say the secret to a good hummus depends on the tehina you use..and Im wondering will you share the secret of your choice of tehina? :) yours truly,an uncurable hummus addict :)

Mediterranean kiwi said...

wow, what a pretty arrangement!, love the little crackers all around it

Laurie Constantino said...

Your husband is very talented! I'm with you, I never peel the chickpeas for tahini. I think the fiber in skins is good for the human body.

Mediterranean Turkish Cook said...

Mia, cok tesekkurler. Yeah it does look beautiful. I guess he wants it to look good to the eyes and to the stomach. :) About the skin of the chickpeas, the only reason we removed them previously was because I thought the hummus won't be smooth. I tried it with the skins on and to my surprise, it was still very smooth even with the skin. I think it's a good idea to keep them as the skins contain a lot of the nutrients and fiber. I really do not have a favorite tahini brand, but I do buy the best one I can find in the store. The first time we made this we used Turkish tahini and the last time we made it we used Greek tahini and I couldn't tell the difference between the two. They both were great! I am not surprised why you're a hummus addict, it's really tasty and nutritious!

Thanks Maria. The decoration was my husband's idea :)

Laurie, I guess he is. Hummus is very easy to make you know :) Every once in a while he'll make something simple or give me ideas about decorating it :) I got an assistant in the kitchen!
I definitely agree about the fiber in the skins of the chickpeas.

meeso said...

I am a huge hummus fan, as is my daughter... I love to make it at home, it is so expensive to buy it prepared... Looks good!

Soma said...

I love Hummus.. .make it pretty often. Healthy & delicious..I have even posted a roasted red pepper hummus.

E. Thai said...

Thanks for visiting my blog! I just made another posting, and it has a recipe in it this time.

I do like hummus, but always bought it from a store (Athenos brand). Do you think I can substitute sesame oil for Tahini?

Summer said...

i never ever peel my chickpeas and they always blend in smoothly...i think the peel has a lot of fiber in it so why throw away something that is good for you?
one more thing, you do not add lemon juice to your recipe?? i think it is a must to add, it gives the hummus a tangy taste that is complimented with the tahini and garlic. i do not add any water to it while its blending in the processor but i add a little bit of yogurt that does the trick really well, you will not taste the yogurt at all but it kinda "breaks" the heavy taste of the tahini. you can always watch my recipe on my hummus on my blog of course. thanks for sharing your husband's recipe here and sorry for the extra long comment :)

Yasmeen said...

We are Hummus fans too:)
please trail back to my blog for a
token of gratitude:)

Mediterranean Turkish Cook said...


I've never tried the lemon juice or yogurt in the hummus. Never thought of it, but next time I make hummus, I will definitely give it a try. Thanks for the tip!