Hummus, to me, is a wonder food, in that it can make a heaping plate of veggies go from rather bland to an absolutely delicious and satisfying snack, without taking away really any of the nutritional value. In fact, chickpeas, which form the base of a classic hummus, are a very good source of protein in their own right, so in some ways you are actually increasing the nutritional heft of your snack with each little dip. Now that is good news!
This recipe produces a creamy hummus with just a slight tang from the lemon juice. It’s very easy with the help of a food processor, and would adapt well to many variations according to your taste–a bit of lemon zest, roasted garlic, an extra dash of red pepper or roasted pepper, so on and so forth. It makes me want to make another batch and experiment just thinking about it! Of course, it also pairs extremely well with pita, which might be slightly less healthy than a plate of veggies, but all things in moderation, right? Hmm, we might need to make chicken gyros or lamb burgers in the near future.. and whole wheat pita bread. Aaah, so many things to cook, so little time! 🙂 Well, at least the hummus is quick, easy, nutritious, and very fulfilling! What’s not to like about that!?
1/4 cup water
3 tbsp. lemon juice (from 1-2 lemons)
6 tbsp. tahini, stirred well
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, plus a bit extra for drizzling
1 14 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 small garlic clove, roughly chopped
1/2 tsp. table salt
1/4 tsp. ground cumin
pinch of cayenne pepper
1 tbsp. fresh cilantro or parsley, minced
Measure water in a small liquid measuring cup, and add lemon juice to combine. In a separate measuring cup or small bowl, whisk together tahini and 2 tbsp. olive oil. Set aside approximately 2 tbsp. of the chickpeas for use as a garnish.
Add remaining chickpeas, garlic, salt, cumin, and cayenne pepper to the bowl of a food processor and process until almost fully ground, about 15 seconds. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula. With the machine running again, add the water and lemon juice mixture in a steady stream through the feed tube. Continue to process for 1 minute, then, with the machine still running, add the olive oil and tahini mixture through the feed tube. Continue to process until the hummus is smooth and creamy, scraping down the sides of the bowl if needed.
Transfer hummus to a serving bowl and sprinkle with reserved chickpeas and cilantro or parsley. This can be served immediately, but will taste best if it has at least 30 minutes for the flavors to meld, and will keep well in the fridge in an airtight container for at least 3 days. When ready to eat, drizzle the top with olive oil and serve.