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Dec 2, 2007 12:08 PM

Making Hummus for the first time

I bought chickpeas, tahini, lemon, and I have the salt, olive oil, and garlic on hand. This all seems really straight forward but I figured I ask if there's anything special anyone likes to do when making hummus?

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  1. Three things come to mind:

    Make sure your food processor works.

    Consider roasting the garlic first and the amount you include is not overwhelming...roasted or raw.

    A sprinkle of fresh herbs adds another level of flavor.

    1. You aren't going to like this....but, I BELIEVE you get smoother hummus if you remove the skins from the chickpeas first...for a 15 ounce can, this takes a while. I still like it very much without removing the skins, but the texture is *to me* better without them but I don't always have time to sit and do this; it's easy enough, just gently squeeze between thumb and finger and the chickpea slips right out but there are a whole lotta chickpeas in a 15 ounce can, that's for sure! If you have a helper, even a child, it would go faster.

      6 Replies
      1. re: Val

        Wow, Val. Your patience and attention to detail are astounding.

        1. re: diablo

          I had read about doing this right here on this board (varying disagreement over it, as always, which is great) and a co-worker whose spouse has had severe problems with ulcerative colitis and even recent extensive surgeries (he's only 34 and has lost so much weight from this sickness that he did not need to lose) told me that he cannot have hummus with the skins so she makes it for him without the skins, God bless her, I get teary-eyed over what they have been through...and then, I tried it and I do think it IS better without the skins, just a perception of mine.

            1. re: Val

              It is better if the skin is removed. To make it easier to remove the skins, simmer the chickpeas in water for about 5 minutes, drain and let cool.

          1. re: Val

            I thought I was the only one who went to the trouble of removing the skins hehe. I agree I think it makes for smoother hummus. Any time I've made it without removing the skins I find one or two that the processor missed(never a whole chickpea, just the skins sheesh). I remove skins while watching tv... makes it seem less tedious :)

            1. re: maplesugar

              If you have a food mill you can easily break down the chickpeas and remove the skins at the same time. Very fast and easy way to remove the skins. I did this for a while and took the ground up chickpeas from the food mill to the food processor. Very smooth results but after doing this for a while I came to the realization that the difference was too little to worry about.

          2. the addition of a little cumin and smoked paprika perks it up a bit, nothing intense, should be subtle.

            1. Good for you Rick. Hummus is super easy. I make it about once a week. I have started cooking my own chickpeas now as well but used canned ones for years. I never removed the skins and if you process it for a long time it gets smooth. I blender will help get ultra smooth results if that's what you're after. I grew up with the addition of ground cumin in hummus. Just doesn't taste right without it for me but it's a matter of personal taste. I always use raw garlic as well as it's the most traditional way to use it. Use roasted if you like it more mellow. When using the garlic, I make a paste of the garlic with salt. Just smash it down on the board and cover in salt. Use the side of your knife to make a paste with the garlic. This way it is incooporated well into the dip and no one gets a chunk of garlic.

              1 Reply
              1. re: scubadoo97

                A very knowledgeable Egyptian client of mine told me to toss a small, peeled, boiled potato into the mix. Seriously. It made the creamiest, richest Hummus I've ever eaten.

              2. At our Lebanese Feast last night, myplateoryours replicated a hummous dish that she'd had in a restaurant in London: bits of lean lamb sauteed in a little olive oil and poured on top of the hummous. Garnish with toasted pine nuts and chopped fresh parsley. Totally out-of-sight!

                1 Reply
                1. re: pikawicca

                  I do that too - love it! I think the pine nuts were "toasted" in butter on the stove top.