Spicie Foodie Nancy Lopez-McHugh with her personal take on the classic mid-east chickpea dip. Sans Tahini. By Nancy Lopez-McHugh
Hummus is a middle eastern spread or dip made mostly from white chickpeas (also know as garbanzo beans). Hummus has enjoyed great popularity in not only middle eastern cuisine but also in Greek cuisine. In recent history it has gained popularity all over the world. Chickpeas have been used in the middle east since ancient times. Some believe that the earliest hummus recipes date back to the 13th century.
Recipes for hummus can vary greatly from country to country and home to home. This makes hummus one of those dishes that can easily be personalized according to taste. The most common ingredients are boiled chickpeas, tahini (sesame seed paste), olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, spices and herbs. All or any combination of ingredients is then ground to make a thick dip or spread and served cold. Hummus can be served as an appetizer with pita or any Arab breads, as part of a Meze, it can be spread on sandwiches, or even served with fresh vegetables as a healthy snack. Hummus makes a healthy snack because the chickpeas are high in fiber, folic acid, a good source of iron, magnesium, copper and zinc. The lemon provides a good source of vitamin C and the olive oil is a source of healthy fat.
Tahini is an ingredient that can sometimes be hard to find. My recipe omits the tahini but still yields a delicious flavor with a lemony flavor.
¼ cup or 60 ml reserved broth from boiling chickpeas or from can
3 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, (E.V.O. oil)
1 medium lemon (I used Meyer lemon) juiced about 3 tbsp juice
½ tsp. granulated garlic
1 tsp. salt
pinch black pepper
extra cooked chickpeas
parsley, dried or fresh
immersion blender or regular blender
In a small bowl combine lemon juice, garlic, salt, pepper and olive oil. Place drained chickpeas/garbanzo beans in blender, remember to reserve the broth. Pour ¼ cup of the reserved broth and the lemon mixture into the blender. Pulse until you have a smooth thick paste. If needed, add extra broth or water to the blender to achieve the consistency needed. Taste and adjust spices if necessary. Pour the hummus into serving dish.
To decorate as in photo: Make a small well near the edge going in a circular motion. Pour some olive oil in the well, place some cooked chickpeas into the well and a few in the center of the dish. Sprinkle with paprika and fresh or dried parsley. Serve with pita and enjoy.