Tuesday, June 29, 2010


So I'm not sure whether or not this is normal, but we go through a container of hummus a week in the Capital Chef household. I literally buy one every time I do my weekly shopping, and by Friday afternoon, we are scraping the barrel. I have heard a few people mention that hummus is actually really easy to make, so I decided to make this my culinary experiment this week. I was pretty excited about how it turned out. My husband even told me it tasted like the hummus at Zaytinya (favorite DC restaurant), so I decided it was blog worthy. I searched several blogs and message boards and all of the recipes were pretty similar. You can really fine tune this recipe to your own taste buds. For example, if you love garlic, you may want to use 2 garlic cloves instead of one or you could add more cumin and lemon juice if you want those flavors to be a bit stronger. My advice is to start with smaller amounts and taste and adjust accordingly.

Overall, I'm not sure that this is *that* much better than my store bought addiction brand, but in general, I do think making this from scratch is a very easy way to add a more personal touch to any casual gathering.

**The one ingredient I have never used before is Tahini, a thick sesame seed paste. I found it in the aisle of my grocery store that contains Hispanic, Asian, and Middle Eastern foods.

Here is what you will need:

(not pictured: lemon and salt. They were feeling camera shy)

Step 1: Before draining and rinsing the chick peas, set aside a 1/4 cup of the chickpea  juice. Drain and rinse the chickpeas and set aside.

Step 2: Peel and smash a medium clove of garlic with the back of a spoon.

Step 3: Insert a 1/4 cup of Tahini and the smashed garlic clove in the food processor.

Step 3:  Squeeze the juice of 1/2 a lemon over the bowl of the food processor. Blend until it forms a smooth paste.

Step 4: Once that paste has been formed, add the can of chick peas and 1/4 cup of the reserved chickpea juice. *I didn't add the juice all at once. I would stop the blender every 30 seconds and add a little more.

It will start to form a thick paste...continue to blend until smooth.

Step 5: Now begin to add the spices. I added a 1/4 teaspoon of cumin, a 1/4 teaspoon of paprika, and a little less than a 1/4 teaspoon of salt. I also added 1 teaspoon of olive oil. After blending this together and taste-testing, I decided to add more lemon juice and strained the other half of the lemon into the mixture. You can add more spices according to your preference, but I think that is a good amount to start with.

After well blended, serve with Pita Chips. Sprinkle with paprika for a nice presentation.

Full List of Ingredients:
15-ounce can of chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans (reserve 1/4 cup of chickpea water )
1 medium garlic clove, smashed and peeled
1/4 cup of tahini
1 medium lemon
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon paprika
Serve with raw vegetables or pita chips.


  1. If you're like me... the tahini will sit in your fridge for years. :)

    Oh, and cool trick: use the flat side of a wide blade knife and the heel of your hand to smash the garlic clove in one whack (for lack of a better term). It's quicker than the spoon, and a little more fun depending on the mood you're in.

  2. ok I'm definitely going to give this a shot! I don't like cumin...is that flavor strong? Maybe I should just leave it out. Thoughts?! Thanks for sharing!

  3. Hummus is wonderful in its basic form, but I like to think of it as a "blank canvas," so I experiment a lot. If you want a slightly sweeter version, try roasting the garlic first. You can also add black olives or roasted red peppers. I've even used grape seed oil in lieu of EVOO. Have fun with it!

  4. Oh, I've never used grape seed oil! What else do you use it for? I love roasted red pepper hummus, so I was actually going to try that this weekend.


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