In the spirit of sharing I started this post about 7 different ways (true story, writing is hard!) and decided that you know what? I don't have to share everything about everything just today. So let's just start easy mkay?
A little backstory on the matter of hummus: I have never liked hummus. Ever. It tasted cardboardy and dry and thick with a creepy starchy consistency and OHMYGOD don't get me started on what do I even eat it with?! Sigh. When I became a vegetarian I figured that, you know, if I'm gonna play the part of a veggie hippie and I should at least learn how to make homemade hummus in case I got invited to an adult dinner party and needed a contribution (confession moment!).
So I spent the past year and a half of my life on the quest to learn how make the perfect hummus and here it is. Bad batches, too much acid, too much tahini (that's the cardboard), too much starch, blah blah blah, and it was never ever ever ever creamy enough no matter what I did. One day perfect hummus happened (that was today, by the way) and the heavens did part and the angels did sing. Life will never be the same from this moment forward.
Here's my recipe for that perfect hummus for the next time you're invited to an adult party.
HOW TO PREPARE DRIED CHICKPEAS
1 cup dried chickpeas
Sure you can use canned chickpeas (garbanzo beans) but preparing them yourself just tastes better and the consistency is so much nicer. Plus did you know you can buy dried chickpeas in bulk at the store? Yeah! Buy a whole bunch and store them in a pretty jar in your pantry. Life is better when there are pretty jars in your pantry.
Put the dried chickpeas in a large bowl, cover generously in water, and soak overnight.
Rinse and bring them to a boil in a large pot and simmer for 1 hour, skimming off any foam that develops. Leave out the salt, kay? Kay. Rinse well with water when finished. Done.
HOW TO ROAST GARLIC
1 or many heads of garlic
Preheat oven to 350'. Cut just enough off the top of the garlic to expose all the cloves. Place the garlic head in a small baking dish with the exposed cloves, cut side, up. Drizzle with olive oil and a dash of salt. Cover dish with aluminum foil and bake for 45 minutes.
CREAMY, FLUFFY, DELICIOUS, PERFECT HUMMUS
1/3 cup tahini
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice (more if you like the acid)
1 cup of dried chickpeas prepared as above (or 2 cans of chickpeas, well rinsed)
1 teaspoon sea salt
white pepper to taste
1 head of roasted garlic
The first trick to creamy hummus is to peel the skins off the chickpeas (don't worry, they come right off). This might seem time-consuming but we're talking 10 minutes of investment and trust me, it's worth it.
The second trick is that you're gonna need a food processor. I used to make hummus with a blender but it's not the same. It will never be the same.
The third trick is to cream the tahini, olive oil, and lemon juice in the food processor for a few minutes before adding the rest of the ingredients. It will get all fluffy and magical, and adding the chickpeas last rather than first is the real secret to achieving the ellusive "cream" consistency.
Fourth, add in the chickpeas and blend for several minutes. Have water on hand to fold in as necessary to achieve desired consistency. I like my hummus creamy, dunno if you knew that, so I probably add in about a cup of water. Keep blending, the longer the better.
You can flavor your hummus with just about anything you can think of, but my most favorite is roasted garlic (hey look, you know how to roast a head of garlic!). You want to add in this extra flavor when you add the chickpeas. Other ideas: roasted red pepper hummus, broccoli hummus, sun dried tomato hummus, cilantro and lime (instead of lemon) hummus, jalapeno hummus, or just plain ol' regular hummus! Also acceptable? Sprinkling with smoked paprika (as seen above), a sprinkle of sea salt, and a drizzle of olive oil.
Serving ideas: spread it on a sandwich instead of mayo, put a dollop on your salad instead of using salad dressing, in a pita sandwich, on a veggie burger, with carrots, cucumbers, snap peas, red peppers, broccoli, cauliflower, chips, pita wedges, etc.