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Jfood needs help please: New to Homemade Hummus

jfood Jul 7, 2008 06:14 AM

The jfoods have been going through tons of hummus (thank you costco and Sabra) and made a batch this weekend. He used Goya Chick peas, garlic, tahini, oil, lemon juice salt and water. Although he liked the flavor it was much nuttier than other varieties he has eaten, almost more of a liquified falaffel flavor (yup jfood knows falaffels are chick peas).

Are there various flavors in different canned chick peas and which brands do people recommend?

Recipes also appreciated. He did a search and found several (including a killer black bean that he will try) but resorted to epicurious.com for his first try.

TIA

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  1. MMRuth RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 07:08 AM

    I usually use the Whole Foods 365 brand - organic. Here's the recipe that I use, from Hopkinson's Roast Chicken & Other Stories:

    10 oz can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
    Juice of 1 lemon
    1 large clove garlic, peeled and crushed
    1 T tahini
    1/2 cup olive oil
    salt
    Tabasco sauce
    1/2 tsp ground cumin

    Blend the chickpeas, lemon juice, tahini and garlic with a little water in the FP, to form a pasted. Then add the olive oil as if you were making mayonnaise - in a stream - you can use more or less depending on how creamy you want it. Season with salt, cumin and tabasco. I usually garnish with some olive oil and cilantro. The recipe is part of one for marinated and grilled lamb chops, served on top of the hummus. The tabasco and cumin give it a nice kick.

    1. southernitalian RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 07:12 AM

      After much experimentation, I've decided I like white bean hummus more than chick peas.

      1 Reply
      1. re: southernitalian
        oakjoan RE: southernitalian May 4, 2009 07:58 PM

        southernitalian: do you use tahini in the white bean hummus?

      2. n
        Nyleve RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 07:26 AM

        The nuttiness probably has more to do with the amount of tahini than the chick peas themselves. And, as you know, falafel is usually served with a tahini sauce also - so that might explain the flavour. Is it also possible that the commercial hummus you buy is made with a touch of mayo? I've seen it used in baba ghannouj. I personally prefer it without, but of course to each his own. It would certainly smooth out the flavour, masking some of the lemony zing of a typical fresh hummus.

        Another thing I would recommend is that you use a blender, if you have one, rather than a processor. It will give you a much much smoother hummus - more like what you might have bought. It's more work because the blender has to be scraped down frequently while it tries to cope with the ingredients, but in my opinion, worth it.

        6 Replies
        1. re: Nyleve
          MMRuth RE: Nyleve Jul 7, 2008 07:42 AM

          I agree about the tahini - was thinking that as well. I'll have to try the blender sometime.

          1. re: MMRuth
            i
            itryalot RE: MMRuth Jul 7, 2008 07:43 AM

            Ditto about the tahini; sometimes when I don't have it, I make it without and still like it.

            1. re: itryalot
              m
              Mellicita RE: itryalot Jul 7, 2008 06:06 PM

              I "third" the tahini comment. I have also noticed that the overall flavor of the hummus is very dependent on the brand of tahini and raw vs toasted tahini.

          2. re: Nyleve
            m
            missfunkysoul RE: Nyleve Jul 7, 2008 07:49 AM

            I actually prefer hummus without tahini, a la Bobbi's. Give it a try.

            1. re: missfunkysoul
              m
              mvi RE: missfunkysoul Jul 7, 2008 04:00 PM

              I am absolutely 100% determined to duplicate Bobbi's this summer and as a result. we eat a lot of hummus around here. And yes, the ingredients do not mention tahini.

              I do give the beans some time simmering on the stove and also try to remove as many of the skins as I can, which makes it smoother. I also use the blender. And when I experiment using canned beans, I do not use any of the liquid in the can as it tastes like- a can.

              It's fun to experiment with a basic hummus and then start adding things to it. But I still have not hit the magic formula that Bobbi has discovered. (I love Sabra, but Bobbi's is over the top.)

              1. re: missfunkysoul
                lollya RE: missfunkysoul May 4, 2009 01:24 PM

                bobbis? you've got me curious about hummus without tahini. i lurv hummus, but it ends up a bit flavorless for me without tahini...calorie-laden with...help!

            2. Gio RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 07:57 AM

              Goya is the chickpea brand I usually use, however, I've made hummous with practically every bean in a can. I never use water, and only about a tablespoon of tahini, although I do like the taste of it. My other variations are no water and just a splash of EVOO. My recipe is very similar to Hopkinson's recipe as MM posted it with the substitution of cayenne instead of Tabasco. It's fun to experiment till you find just the right ingredients/ratios to your liking.

              1. pikawicca RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 08:07 AM

                I usually cook my own chickpeas, but if I don't have time, I use Goya. I lived in the Middle East for three years, and all of the hummous I ate (lots) was basically the same: chick peas, tahini, lemon juice, garlic and salt whirred in the blender and thinned as needed with some of the chickpea cooking liquid. Spread on a platter and drizzle with good olive oil -- never put the oil IN the hummous! A lot of Americans put way too much garlic in this dish.

                Instead of following a recipe, I like to adjust the taste as I blend. Sounds like you find the tahini overpowering, so I'd start out using less. Personally, I like a very lemony hummous, so I keep adding more until it's perfect.

                A great variation is to spread the hummous on a platter, but instead of drizzling with oil, use the oil to quickly sear little bits of cut-up lamb. Dump that on top of the hummous --delicious.

                18 Replies
                1. re: pikawicca
                  n
                  Nyleve RE: pikawicca Jul 7, 2008 08:29 AM

                  I agree completely about everything you say. Most North Americans make tahini with too little lemon, waaaay too much garlic, and it's usually much too thick. I like tahini that's quite creamy and with just a little olive oil drizzled on top. And to thin it, I use either the cooking liquid (if I'm using home cooked beans) or some of the liquid from the can of chick peas.

                  A sprinkle of finely chopped parsley, a bit of zaatar, or some smoked or regular paprika on top are nice for a change also. But never mixed in - just sprinked on top. The lamb sounds fantastic.

                  1. re: Nyleve
                    MMRuth RE: Nyleve Jul 7, 2008 08:32 AM

                    I've made a dish where you saute ground lamb and put it on top - terrific.

                    1. re: MMRuth
                      Rubee RE: MMRuth Jul 7, 2008 01:01 PM

                      Oh yes! A CH brought that once to a party at my house and it was delicious. Thanks for reminding me.....

                    2. re: Nyleve
                      jfood RE: Nyleve Jul 7, 2008 08:40 AM

                      like the liquid from the can idea. Oh boy fun tonight.

                      1. re: jfood
                        MMRuth RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 01:13 PM

                        One thing to be mindful of with the liquid from the can - my husband finds that it causes him intestinal difficulties, so I rinse the beans well and discard the liquid. I'm going to have to try making hummus without olive oil - I'm curious now.

                        1. re: MMRuth
                          jfood RE: MMRuth Jul 7, 2008 02:13 PM

                          don't want any of that during HK tomorrow night. thanks for the heads up. h2o sounds good.

                          1. re: jfood
                            Scrapironchef RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 03:38 PM

                            I was going to suggest rinsing and draining the beans first and add back in plain water as needed. That's what I was taught and it has worked for me. Adding the oil and water in small amounts at the same time to the beans in the food processor makes it emulsify and get a little "fluffier".

                      2. re: Nyleve
                        lollya RE: Nyleve May 4, 2009 01:25 PM

                        i LOVE smoked paprika on top. :D

                        1. re: lollya
                          andytee RE: lollya May 4, 2009 01:45 PM

                          agreed - smoked paprika is great. i love to garnish with a drizzling of good olive oil and a dusting of smoked paprika.

                      3. re: pikawicca
                        mrsjenpeters RE: pikawicca Jul 8, 2008 01:42 PM

                        i am one of those terrible americans that uses way too much garlic. :) i understand it's a bastardization, but i really love the spicy kick it gives, and don't mind the dragon breath afterwards. ;)

                        1. re: mrsjenpeters
                          v
                          Val RE: mrsjenpeters Jul 8, 2008 04:18 PM

                          Me too, mrsjenpeters, me too! And, lest we not forget, raw garlic is VERY good for your immune system!

                        2. re: pikawicca
                          k
                          Kagey RE: pikawicca Jul 9, 2008 04:34 AM

                          Bingo on how to make hummous. Although I don't have a blender and use a food processor. Luckily, I don't mind mine a little less than silky smooth.

                          Most recipes I know call for way too much garlic. If you're using one can of chickpeas, a clove of garlic is going to overpower it. I microplane or mash about 1/3 to 1/2 clove and add that before processing. Nothing like biting into a bit of raw garlic when you're not expecting it.

                          It's also good to note that the raw garlic flavor intensifies over time. Not a bad idea to let your hummous sit for a couple of hours in the fridge before deciding that it's not garlicky enough.

                          1. re: Kagey
                            MMRuth RE: Kagey Jul 9, 2008 04:41 AM

                            I love the idea of using the microplane on the garlic.

                            1. re: MMRuth
                              goodhealthgourmet RE: MMRuth Jul 9, 2008 12:28 PM

                              "I love the idea of using the microplane on the garlic."
                              ~~~~~~~
                              a microplane is great for fresh ginger as well. it really is one of the best kitchen gadgets ever.

                              back on topic, re: hummus, i prefer roasted garlic in mine - mellower flavor.

                              1. re: MMRuth
                                k
                                Kagey RE: MMRuth Jul 10, 2008 12:41 AM

                                Yes, it's very convenient. But do take care because that thing will go through a clove of garlic (and then the skin on your finger) faster than you can believe. If you're used to using it on ginger, you'll see what I mean!

                            2. re: pikawicca
                              m
                              Magnificat2005 RE: pikawicca Jul 9, 2008 12:53 PM

                              How do you cook your chickpeas? I bought 2 bags of dried peas and they're sitting in my cupboard, waiting to be used!

                              1. re: Magnificat2005
                                pikawicca RE: Magnificat2005 Jul 9, 2008 04:59 PM

                                Soak them overnight, then dump the soaking water. Cover with fresh cold water, bring to a boil for 5 minutes, reduce heat and simmer until tender, anywhere from 2-4 hours, depending on the age of the beans.

                              2. re: pikawicca
                                thew RE: pikawicca Jul 12, 2008 12:48 PM

                                i have to say i've had some very garliky hummus in israel

                              3. jfood RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 08:07 AM

                                Thanks everyone. The tahini is probablythe culprit since the recipe i used from epicurious recommended 1/3C of tahini for a 16oz can of chicks. jfood could not understand given the price of the tahini at $5.29 and this is supposed to be a very cost effective dish.

                                jfood will open another can of chicks and combine tonight and see how that works.

                                BTW - the water is a great way to get to the consitency desired.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: jfood
                                  stellamystar RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 08:33 AM

                                  Barefoot Contessa Hummus from her first cookbook. The best. ever. ! Lots of lemon juice, which I like.

                                  HUMMUS - Ina Garten
                                  4 garlic cloves
                                  2 cups canned chickpeas, drained, liquid reserved
                                  1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
                                  1/3 cup tahini (sesame paste)
                                  6 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (2 lemons)
                                  2 tablespoons water or liquid from the chickpeas
                                  8 dashes hot sauce

                                  Dump. Process. Let sit for an hour..combine flavors. Enjoy!

                                  I always make a double batch..too yummy to resist.

                                2. chef chicklet RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 08:08 AM

                                  I didn't see the proportions so I'd list my recipe, but is so similar to the others. The difference is I make a double batch so I use 6 T fresh lemon juice, parsely, fresh cracked pepper, and cumin. Cumin and more lemon juice could help with too much tahini. I've also used roasted sesame oil when out of tahini.

                                  1. Eat_Nopal RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 08:25 AM

                                    Senora Nopales makes incredibly good Hummus... she dry roasts the garlic and adds lemon zest also we like the Sicilian olive oil at Trader Joe's... otherwise everything else is conventional... canned chick peas, kosher salt, Sadaf tahini, lemon juice etc.,

                                    The flavors are chiaroscuro (generally bright but with interspersed notes of smoke from the roasted garlic, and mild sweetness)

                                    1. s
                                      smtucker RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 08:48 AM

                                      When I began making hummus, I started with the Silver Palette recipe. I still use this as a guide, but use less olive oil and more lemon and cumin. The toasted and ground cumin adds a flavor that I really miss when buying Sabra brand at costco.

                                      I like Goya and Progresso brand chick peas. The quality of the tahini is really essential. I used to buy Near East, but haven't seen that brand in years. Tahinis bought at Whole Foods didn't taste right to me. I now buy a tahini from a local greek store which has a good flavor.

                                      My homemade hummus is not as creamy as the Sabra, but has so much less oil that I feel better about eating it by the spoonful.

                                      1. greedygirl RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 08:54 AM

                                        If you want really creamy houmous like the Sabra one, you probably need to skin the chickpeas, which is a bit of a pain in the proverbial. You should also avoid the tahini you find in health food type places, and try to get a good Lebanese brand from a Middle Eastern store.

                                        19 Replies
                                        1. re: greedygirl
                                          megek RE: greedygirl Jul 7, 2008 09:48 AM

                                          Yeah, I cook garbanzos from scratch and then peel the skins off over a movie or something, since it takes forever! But it makes really creamy hummus.

                                          1. re: megek
                                            n
                                            Nyleve RE: megek Jul 7, 2008 10:09 AM

                                            If you use a blender there is no reason to skin the chick peas. I swear. Try it. There are a few, almost undetectible, granules in the finished product but a blender will make it super smooth. It also matters how soft the chick peas are. Some brands of canned are softer than others, and if using home-cooked they should be cooked to total squishiness.

                                            1. re: Nyleve
                                              MMRuth RE: Nyleve Jul 7, 2008 10:18 AM

                                              Thanks - I have to confess I don't skin them, unless there is some obvious piece of skin about to fall off. I do think the one I make with the FP is pretty smooth - may be all that olive oil - but I will try.

                                              1. re: Nyleve
                                                chef chicklet RE: Nyleve Jul 7, 2008 10:32 AM

                                                I agree, I use a blender too. I always make a double batch, it just goes too fast so I just make a lot to keep everyone happy. I love the texture the blender gives, I don't like it too thick. I do think sauteeing the garlic helps or roast it either way. And I love to add a nice pool of good olive oil to the parsley covered top, sort of makes it. Gosh now I'm craving it.
                                                This is just the best stuff with some good Mid-Eastern bread.

                                                1. re: chef chicklet
                                                  n
                                                  Nyleve RE: chef chicklet Jul 7, 2008 11:16 AM

                                                  There's a bakery in Ottawa, Ontario that makes the most dreamy pita bread with zaatar topping that I have ever eaten. The zaatar is baked into the very thin, very Lebanese pita bread and it is absolutely the best thing to eat with hummus. If anyone lives within a two hour drive of Ottawa you should go to Middle East Bakery on Somerset and load up. I always have some in the freezer.

                                                  1. re: Nyleve
                                                    maplesugar RE: Nyleve Jul 7, 2008 01:04 PM

                                                    We're heading to Ottawa/Montreal/Toronto late July I'll definitely stop by Middle East Bakery - thanks for the tip! :)

                                                    1. re: maplesugar
                                                      n
                                                      Nyleve RE: maplesugar Jul 7, 2008 01:09 PM

                                                      Make sure you get there early in the day. They tend to sell out of the stuff. You'll thank me for this.

                                                  2. re: chef chicklet
                                                    jfood RE: chef chicklet Jul 7, 2008 12:17 PM

                                                    texture was fine with adding liquid until correct consistency in a food processor.

                                                    1. re: jfood
                                                      chef chicklet RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 01:30 PM

                                                      How about the taste, did it work out? Or did I mistakenly think "nutty" for flavor and you meant consistency?
                                                      This stuff needs to come with a warning!

                                                      1. re: chef chicklet
                                                        jfood RE: chef chicklet Jul 7, 2008 02:13 PM

                                                        the consistency is easy to manage to the smoothness desired. it's the flavor that was too nutty. just came home and will add some more beans after dinner. will report back. sorry for the confusion.

                                                  3. re: Nyleve
                                                    greedygirl RE: Nyleve Jul 8, 2008 02:50 AM

                                                    I always use my Cuisinart blender, and there's definitely a difference if you skin the chickpeas. Most of the time I don't bother though. Mr GG prefers the slightly grainy texture anyway.

                                                    1. re: greedygirl
                                                      v
                                                      Val RE: greedygirl Jul 8, 2008 04:22 PM

                                                      I was going to bring up the skinning of the chickpeas...a co-worker swears by it...I've done it, well, most of the time, but GOD!!!!! it takes forever...if you have a helper, it's great....I do think it makes for a smoother hummus.

                                                      1. re: Val
                                                        goodhealthgourmet RE: Val Jul 8, 2008 04:43 PM

                                                        every time i make hummus, i start cursing myself & regretting the decision about halfway through the skinning process :) i'd pay *good* money for a gadget that would remove the skins for me...

                                                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                          scubadoo97 RE: goodhealthgourmet Jul 8, 2008 05:30 PM

                                                          use a food mill to remove the skins and break down the chickpeas. They will need to be further processed in a food processor or blender but the mill will seperate skins from flesh.

                                                          1. re: scubadoo97
                                                            goodhealthgourmet RE: scubadoo97 Jul 9, 2008 12:30 PM

                                                            i've tried the mill a few times - never works for me. i just end up with a mushed mess, and have to fish the skins out of the crushed chickpeas. NOT fun.

                                                        2. re: Val
                                                          n
                                                          Nyleve RE: Val Jul 8, 2008 05:43 PM

                                                          I cannot imagine anyone who makes hummus more than twice a year bothering to skin the chick peas. As much as I love a nice smooth hummus that's just going one step too far. But that's just me.

                                                          1. re: Nyleve
                                                            scubadoo97 RE: Nyleve Jul 8, 2008 06:37 PM

                                                            I make it almost weekly and went through a period of trying for the smoothest preparation. Removing the skins and using fresh cooked chickpeas made the smoothest hummus I've ever had. It was almost too smooth. I passed through that obsession and now leave the skins on.

                                                            If you are rinsing the chickpeas in the sink in a big bowl of water a few stirs will remove a lot of skins and you can drain them off. You won't get all of them but you will reduce the % greatly.

                                                            1. re: scubadoo97
                                                              andytee RE: scubadoo97 May 5, 2009 05:57 AM

                                                              Yeah, removing skins by hand is waaaay to much work to keep up with on any sort of regular basis. And, personally, if everything else is done right I find they make only the smallest difference.

                                                              When I am trying extra hard to make an impressive hummus, I will do what you suggested, rinse the cooked chickpeas in a big bowl of cold water and do a little stirring with my fingers to bring some of the skins to the surface to remove.

                                                              Most of the time, I don't bother, and the hummus turns out fine.

                                                      2. re: Nyleve
                                                        toutefrite RE: Nyleve Jul 10, 2008 03:43 PM

                                                        Must disagree, vehemently. I always use the blender, and after having done many batches both skinned and unskinned, there is no competition. Only the skinned batches can yield that silky consistency. The fibrous bits of skin never emulsify, they just get broken down into bits. For super sensitive (picky) eaters, it's always obvious whether I have gone to the trouble or not.

                                                  4. PamelaD RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 09:17 AM

                                                    I never use tahini in my hummus, but add a few drops of sesame oil instead. I also think cumin is a neccessity. And if you have time, use roasted garlic instead of raw- milder and more complex flavor.

                                                    1. Rubee RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 01:10 PM

                                                      A tip I've learned from Jean Anderson's "Process This" - if using canned chickpeas, I drain and dry them with a paper towel, and then roast in a single-layer in a pan at 400 for about 15-20 minutes. It gives them better flavor. I agree too that removing the skins seems to make the hummus creamier, but I don't always do it since it's time consuming. I have to try Nyleve's suggestion of using a blender instead of a food processor.

                                                      I've tried a lot of recipes, and the recipe I use now is based on one from Sally Schneider's "A New Way to Cook" - mainly my 'secret ingredients' of freshly toasted and ground cumin, coriander, and sesame seeds (along with chick peas, lemon juice, tahini, garlic, and olive oil). Even professed hummus-haters always ask for the recipe. I garnish with ground sumac or zatar and drizzle with evoo. For a fancier presentation, I make a pattern on top and fill with homemade parsley oil, and garnish with lemon zest.

                                                      BTW, recently a CH posted that you can freeze hummus. Has anybody else had success with this?

                                                      11 Replies
                                                      1. re: Rubee
                                                        chef chicklet RE: Rubee Jul 7, 2008 01:33 PM

                                                        You can make little divits or a rake like pattern yes your're right, it holds the olive oil nicely. Love the zesting, I'll be stealing that idea!

                                                        1. re: Rubee
                                                          pikawicca RE: Rubee Jul 7, 2008 03:32 PM

                                                          No wonder "professed hummus-haters" like this -- it's not hummous. It might be a delightful bean dip, but it's not hummous. Hummous does not have cumin, coriander, or sesame seeds in it. Nor is it topped with sumac or za'atar -- those go on the bread.

                                                          1. re: pikawicca
                                                            Rubee RE: pikawicca Jul 7, 2008 03:48 PM

                                                            Actually, since it's regional, there is no one way of making hummus. You're missing out! There are so many variations of hummous, hummus, humus, etc., many of which include cumin, as it's a dish found in different cuisines such as Arab, Turkish, Israeli, Syrian, etc. IIRC, when we were in Greece, we also attended a wedding in Thessaloniki (near Turkey so the food had Turkish influences) and had hummus sprinkled with paprika on several occasions. A Lebanese friend is the one who taught me to serve it garnished with sumac or zatar and parsley, which is the way he enjoyed it growing up in Lebanon. He also sometimes uses pine nuts or pomegranate seeds to garnish. Ground toasted sesame seeds can hardly be called inauthentic as that is what tahini is made from. The addition of ground coriander may not be traditional in hummus, but I like the combination of it with the other seasonings. I do remember, however, coriander/cilantro being an ingredient in recipes I made when Roden's authentic Middle Eastern cookbook "Arabesque" was COTM. In fact, my friend asks me to bring the hummus when he throws his frequent Lebanese dinner parties. ; )

                                                            As MMRuth mentioned above, after trying it for the first time when tatamagouche brought it to a CH party I had last year, it's also delicious topped with ground lamb (and pine nuts and onions) - hummus awarma.

                                                            1. re: Rubee
                                                              n
                                                              Nyleve RE: Rubee Jul 7, 2008 03:52 PM

                                                              The first time I ever had hummus - this was 40 years ago in Israel - it was drizzle with olive oil and sprinkled with pine nuts. I had never seen a pine nut before either. Found the whole thing very exotic.

                                                              1. re: Rubee
                                                                pikawicca RE: Rubee Jul 7, 2008 06:02 PM

                                                                All I can say is that I had friends/hummous makers from Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Saudi Arabie, UAE, Yemen,etc. NO ONE used cumin, coriander, sesame, cilantro...whatever. "Arabesque" is a great cookbook, but it's not authentic.

                                                                1. re: pikawicca
                                                                  Rubee RE: pikawicca Jul 7, 2008 06:51 PM

                                                                  I appreciate you trying to convince all that there is only one way to make hummus as it seems in your experience every person you know made it the exact same way, but in my experience, I have found the opposite to be true. The thread is a request for hummus recipes, and I posted my favorite one.

                                                                  I only mention Arabesque because I was surprised to find coriander in some of the recipes. Just now Googling "Middle East" and "coriander", however, it seems that it is a common ingredient after all, so I've learned something new! I love this book and was impressed with the fact that Roden, who is of Egyptian and Jewish background, traveled extensively to Morocco, Lebanon, and Turkey to gather the royal dishes, home-cooking, celebratory meals, and street food recipes found in Arabesque. I also learned a lot from the detailed discussion of ingredients, customs, and cultural and historical information she includes in the introductions to each region along with her personal reminescences and experiences in the recipe notes - very interesting, and makes this travelogue/cookbook authentic to me.

                                                                  I really do feel you're missing out limiting yourself to only the variation with which you're familiar, but to each his own!

                                                                  BTW, for those who weren't following along when Arabesque was COTM, here's the link. As you can tell, this book is one of my favorites ; )

                                                                  April 2007 Cookbook of the Month: Arabesque: A Taste of Morocco, Turkey, and Lebanon
                                                                  http://www.chowhound.com/topics/387069

                                                                  1. re: Rubee
                                                                    MMRuth RE: Rubee Jul 8, 2008 12:24 PM

                                                                    Out of curiosity, I checked some of my other books.

                                                                    Lebanese Mountain Cookery - uses no oil, other than as garnish, you mash the chickpeas, either by hand or using a blender, then add 1/3 cup tahini to 2/3 cup dried chickpeas, with several table spoons of the cooking liquid, slowly, then slowly add 1/3 cup lemon juice (or more!), salt, and 1 large crushed garlic clove to taste. She says "everyone likes this a different consistency, so play it by ear." She says to garnish with parsley and paprika, and cayenne if you have a taste for it. Drizzle olive oil on top.

                                                                    I think this is the book that I got the lamb topping from - brown pine nuts and finely minced lamb in butter (separately), combine, season with salt & pepper, then sprinkle in thick layer over the "hummous bi tahini".

                                                                    Mama Nazim's Jewish-Iraqi Cuisine doesn't have a recipe for it.

                                                                    Roden's "A Book of Middle Eastern Food" has a recipe for "Hummus bi Tahini" - 3/4 cup chickpeas (dried), juice of 2-3 lemons, 2-3 cloves garlic, 1/2 cup tahini and salt. Garnish with olive oil, paprika, chopped parsley. She says to add a little water to puree the chickpeas (press through sieve or pound in a mortar or use blender or mixer). She mentions cayenne as an alternative to paprika - some going into the "cream", the rest sprinkled on top with some cumin, "in a star design of alternating red and brown."

                                                                  2. re: pikawicca
                                                                    b
                                                                    Bakersfield Hound RE: pikawicca Jul 8, 2008 04:38 PM

                                                                    AMEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
                                                                    True is chick peas & juice, garlic, tahini, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper.
                                                                    Danny

                                                                2. re: pikawicca
                                                                  scubadoo97 RE: pikawicca Jul 7, 2008 04:07 PM

                                                                  My Syrian/Turkish grandmothers always used cumin in their hummus. Maybe a regional thing.

                                                                  I try to cook my own chickpeas these days. They taste better than the can and the liquid is very flavorful when added to thin. I find I get a creamier texture from home cooked chickpeas even without removing the skins.

                                                                  A big factor is the quality of the tahini. Some are much better than others. I buy Lebanese brands that come in plastic jars. These seem to always be very creamy and have not separated into oil and a hard lump. Some brands have more bitter notes than others. I too use a lot of lemon juice. I process the garlic on the cutting board with salt to form a garlic paste. This incorporates better in the dish than chopped or minced garlic.

                                                                  1. re: pikawicca
                                                                    d
                                                                    danfishinman RE: pikawicca Nov 4, 2008 12:36 PM

                                                                    THANK YOU!!!!!! I'm syrian and lebanese and have been appalled recently tastng cumin in everyone hummous... I kept thinking it had gone bad.
                                                                    There is no Cumin in real Hummous. Sesame Tahini yes ..Cumin ??? No way thats NOT Hummous.

                                                                    1. re: danfishinman
                                                                      b
                                                                      Bakersfield Hound RE: danfishinman May 14, 2009 08:11 PM

                                                                      I'm also Lebanese and you are right, traditional hummous does not have all of these off seasonings.
                                                                      Danny

                                                                3. p
                                                                  pengcast RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 04:20 PM

                                                                  I much prefer dried bean to anything canned variety. Also my Lebanese friend said that they often put lemon zest into the water the beans were cooked in.

                                                                  Either, way I just love hummous and will have to make some now after reading all these posts.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: pengcast
                                                                    k
                                                                    Kagey RE: pengcast Jul 9, 2008 04:44 AM

                                                                    I'd just like to note that the quality of canned chickpeas varies dramatically depending on brand, and possibly other factors. Anyhow, I'm lucky enough to have found some that I really do think are just as good as dried. At least in hummous, I can't tell the difference. That's just to say that if you can find a really good brand, you might save yourself some time and work in the future (this coming from someone who often forgets to soak the beans).

                                                                  2. jfood RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 07:34 PM

                                                                    Thanks to all. Too much Tahini was the issue. jfood used a big can of chicks, 1T of tahini, lemon, cumin, water, oil, salt, franks hot sauce. perfect :-)) :-)))

                                                                    7 Replies
                                                                    1. re: jfood
                                                                      chef chicklet RE: jfood Jul 7, 2008 07:40 PM

                                                                      Applause!

                                                                      1. re: jfood
                                                                        a
                                                                        amyvc RE: jfood Jul 8, 2008 12:17 PM

                                                                        LOVE that you used Frank's in your final product. It really is such a great hot sauce and makes almost any dish better.

                                                                        1. re: amyvc
                                                                          jfood RE: amyvc Jul 8, 2008 12:31 PM

                                                                          Little jfood keeps a bottle in her car.

                                                                          And now she goes to school in NOLA. Go figure.

                                                                        2. re: jfood
                                                                          GodfatherofLunch RE: jfood Jul 8, 2008 12:28 PM

                                                                          You hit the nail on the head. What you prepared is actually called
                                                                          Hummus bi Tahini which means Hummus with Tahini. To eliminate the nutty flavor( I don't know why you would want to ) eliminate the Tahini. To cut back on the nutty flavor just cut back on the Tahini.

                                                                          1. re: GodfatherofLunch
                                                                            jfood RE: GodfatherofLunch Jul 8, 2008 12:32 PM

                                                                            Here's the rub. It tasted so much like falaffel that the taste buds were looking for the pita and white sauce and that itty bitty pickle.

                                                                            Jfood liked it a lot but the others were looking for a more hummus, less falaffel taste. To each his own, even within a family.

                                                                            1. re: jfood
                                                                              GodfatherofLunch RE: jfood Jul 8, 2008 12:46 PM

                                                                              I got ya - the white sauce you speak of IS the Tahini. Just back off on the Tahini and you will have less nutty flavor. Perhaps serve the Tahini on the side and everyone can stir in as much as they would like to there own taste.

                                                                              1. re: GodfatherofLunch
                                                                                jfood RE: GodfatherofLunch Jul 8, 2008 12:57 PM

                                                                                yup, maybe someone will call a fallafel on pita a "deconstructed hummus" and charge $15.

                                                                        3. l
                                                                          lexpatti RE: jfood Jul 8, 2008 03:14 AM

                                                                          Now try using edamame - we love it as hummus.

                                                                          1. Scargod RE: jfood Jul 8, 2008 05:29 AM

                                                                            Don't know if this is heresey. Don't know if hummus is big with vegeterians....
                                                                            I've made it a time or two, in a different life, but I basically don't know shit from Shinola!
                                                                            What I do know is, I frequently use homemade chicken stock to flavor beans, as I cook them and as the liquid, if I need to thin something.
                                                                            Would this be acceptable?

                                                                            7 Replies
                                                                            1. re: Scargod
                                                                              kimeats RE: Scargod Jul 8, 2008 12:46 PM

                                                                              The recipe for hummus on the back of the Bob's Red Mill Garbanzo Bean Flour bag calls for chicken broth/stock. I've never tried it though.

                                                                              1. re: kimeats
                                                                                MMRuth RE: kimeats Jul 8, 2008 01:15 PM

                                                                                Does the recipe call for using garbanzo bean flour to make hummus?

                                                                                1. re: MMRuth
                                                                                  kimeats RE: MMRuth Jul 8, 2008 01:25 PM

                                                                                  Yes it does. I use it to make socca and other things. But i've heard from others that they prefer hummus made from garbanzo bean flour instead of the actual beans because its smoother and fluffier. I should try it out.

                                                                                  1. re: kimeats
                                                                                    MMRuth RE: kimeats Jul 8, 2008 01:26 PM

                                                                                    Thanks - I'd just never heard of that before.

                                                                                    1. re: MMRuth
                                                                                      Eat_Nopal RE: MMRuth Jul 8, 2008 01:49 PM

                                                                                      Since you love Italian food... the Afghans make their noodles & dumplings from Garbanzo Flour - very flavorful & nutty... a very common way to serve them is with a ground lamb - tomato meatsauce... as well as a dollop of thick, cultured yogurt & dried mint.... a good version is on par with the most compelling Italian pasta dishes I've ever had.

                                                                                      1. re: Eat_Nopal
                                                                                        MMRuth RE: Eat_Nopal Jul 8, 2008 01:51 PM

                                                                                        Thanks - I'll have to give that a try ....

                                                                              2. re: Scargod
                                                                                goodhealthgourmet RE: Scargod Jul 8, 2008 12:50 PM

                                                                                scargod: my concern would be that adding stock to the hummus might impart a noticeable flavor that doesn't really belong there.

                                                                              3. c
                                                                                classylady RE: jfood Jul 8, 2008 05:55 AM

                                                                                I took off the skin from the chickpeas and to no avail the hummus was still nuttier and not smooth. Still like using the recipe for tehina provided it is a good product. I am using one from Lebanon.

                                                                                1. GodfatherofLunch RE: jfood Jul 8, 2008 01:55 PM

                                                                                  To me this recipe is both easy and it tastes GREAT
                                                                                  Hummus bi Tahini
                                                                                  Ingredients:
                                                                                  1 (15oz.)can of chickpeas
                                                                                  2 small garlic cloves
                                                                                  1 tablespoon tahini (sesame seed paste)
                                                                                  Juice of one lemon
                                                                                  1/8 teaspoon cumin
                                                                                  olive oil, parsley, paprika or cumin for serving
                                                                                  Directions:
                                                                                  Pour just a bit of water out of the can, leaving ¾ of the can filled with water
                                                                                  Pour the chickpeas with their water into the blender. Blend together for 5 minutes, or until well blended.
                                                                                  Add the lemon juice, cumin, and the tahini. Blend until the mixture is slightly thick. Taste and adjust seasoning with lemon juice and salt.
                                                                                  To serve: spread hummus in a shallow bowl, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with spices if desired. I like to decorate with paprika before drizzling with the olive oil.

                                                                                  1. s
                                                                                    smile81 RE: jfood Jul 9, 2008 02:47 PM

                                                                                    I have two key ingredients in my hummus, aside from lemon juice, olive oil, salt, can garbanzo- tahini that was specifically recommended to me from a local middle eastern grocery store. their homemade hummus is amazing, so I asked them what kind of tahini and they just sold me some. really makes a difference. also, non-traditional, but gives excellent texture, add some greek yogurt.

                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                    1. re: smile81
                                                                                      goodhealthgourmet RE: smile81 Jul 9, 2008 05:11 PM

                                                                                      "also, non-traditional, but gives excellent texture, add some greek yogurt."
                                                                                      ~~~~~~
                                                                                      i used to make my hummus with greek yogurt. removed it because i had to modify my recipes to be dairy-free, but it is a great way to achieve creamy, luscious texture...particularly if you want to cut back on the tahini to reduce the fat.

                                                                                    2. l
                                                                                      Laurella RE: jfood Jul 10, 2008 09:05 AM

                                                                                      I know that jfood has solved his hummus issue already, but I was surprised that no one mentioned the recent Cooks Illustrated Restaurant Style Hummus. We tried it out and, even using canned chickpeas (not skinned), this made the smoothest homemade hummus we've ever had. Our favorite store-bought hummus is the Trader Joe's Mediterranean hummus and our rivaled that for texture, but improved upon it in flavor since we can balance it just as we like. We did have trouble with the Joyva tahini recommened by Cooks', though, because we ran into that 'oil on top, solid lump on bottom' phenomenon that one of the other posters mentioned. We think our hummus tasted a little dusty because we stirred in lumpy stuff off the bottom.

                                                                                      9 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: Laurella
                                                                                        jfood RE: Laurella Jul 10, 2008 10:12 AM

                                                                                        Thanks L but once you start down that path at casa jfood, you just keep branching. Jfood used the canned Goya and the hummus is silky smooth, he does not even undersand some of the comments about skinny, so he'll stay quiet.

                                                                                        He also used the Joyva Tahini and had the same oil/lump issue. It was a little messy getting it smooth for try-1. But he placed in the fridge and for try-2 a couple of days later, it did not separate, so once you go through the first angst, the next batches are easier.

                                                                                        1. re: jfood
                                                                                          goodhealthgourmet RE: jfood Jul 10, 2008 01:57 PM

                                                                                          what doesn't jfood understand about skinning the chickpeas?

                                                                                          1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                                            jfood RE: goodhealthgourmet Jul 12, 2008 02:22 PM

                                                                                            jfood undersds the concept of skinning, per se, but the hummus he made with the canned goyas was so smooth he does not undestand how it could be any smoother.

                                                                                            1. re: jfood
                                                                                              goodhealthgourmet RE: jfood Jul 13, 2008 07:04 AM

                                                                                              got it.

                                                                                              there's just a silkiness that i can only achieve without the skins...but trust me, if i could get it smooth enough for my liking, i'd gladly leave them on and save myself the tedious task of removing each slippery little sucker!

                                                                                          2. re: jfood
                                                                                            chef chicklet RE: jfood Jul 10, 2008 02:06 PM

                                                                                            cc never has a problem with lumping hummus and oil because she never has any left over...oink oink!

                                                                                            1. re: chef chicklet
                                                                                              goodhealthgourmet RE: chef chicklet Jul 10, 2008 02:15 PM

                                                                                              chicklet - the lumpiness discussion was re: tahini, not hummus.

                                                                                              but you're definitely not alone in the "lack of leftovers" department. when it comes to good hummus i have to exercise serious restraint not to polish off the entire batch in one sitting.

                                                                                              1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                                                chef chicklet RE: goodhealthgourmet Jul 12, 2008 09:48 AM

                                                                                                oh I was sleeping again!
                                                                                                I don't even want to think about the caloric intake with that stuff...please tell me it's healthy!! No one ever eats a tablespoon or two when I make it.

                                                                                                1. re: chef chicklet
                                                                                                  goodhealthgourmet RE: chef chicklet Jul 12, 2008 12:03 PM

                                                                                                  hey, a girl's gotta sleep sometime ;)

                                                                                                  "please tell me it's healthy!! No one ever eats a tablespoon or two when I make it."
                                                                                                  ~~~~~~~
                                                                                                  as long as you don't go crazy with the oil or tahini, hummus is actually very healthy.

                                                                                          3. re: Laurella
                                                                                            l
                                                                                            ldkelley RE: Laurella Jul 12, 2008 09:53 AM

                                                                                            We really liked the "ultimate hummus" from that article in Cooks Illustrated. It is now the #1 most requested dish for us to bring with us to friend's houses.

                                                                                          4. firecooked RE: jfood Jul 10, 2008 08:37 PM

                                                                                            Question on tahini paste -- there is always the choice of roasted or raw. Is one more traditional or better for hummus?

                                                                                            1. Alacrity59 RE: jfood Jul 11, 2008 06:17 AM

                                                                                              Wow, so many responses with good tips. I typically do two cans of chickpeas at a time. I'd never even considered pealing the chick peas. Years ago I used to use tahini but for me it really didn't add much flavour that mattered. I rinse any bean I get in a can and for that matter any frozen veg. . . I think we all get used to the taste of water in our municipality so tend to like the taste better and the goo that comes in some cans of beans scares me. After food processing the chick peas with the lemon juice and salt I split in three batches. One stays plain, one I add garlic, the third gets roasted red peppers. Sometimes I'll throw in some hot pepper rings for some zing. Each batch is processed to the point that you really can't make out the bits of the additions.

                                                                                              1. b
                                                                                                Bakersfield Hound RE: jfood Jul 12, 2008 10:24 AM

                                                                                                If we're going though all the different variations of hummus, then add; roasted red pepper hummus, roasted garlic hummus, black bean hummus, spinach hummus, kalamata olive hummus , and sun dried tomato hummus.
                                                                                                Danny

                                                                                                1. Scargod RE: jfood Jul 13, 2008 05:09 AM

                                                                                                  Glad your post prodded me to make hummus again. After having been served several packaged varieties at parties I was kinda turned off by it and forgot how good it is and easy to prepare; easier than salsa fresca.
                                                                                                  I used Goya beans. My son worked as a head cook in an Austin vegetarian place and this is his recipe. He used a food processor so I added an extra 1/4 cup of oil to get it to move in my blender. He did not want me adding water or using the water from the can. I refrained from adding chicken stock....The three of us pronounced it delicious.

                                                                                                  Robogod's Hummus
                                                                                                  1-15.5 oz. can, Goya garbanzo beans, rinsed well
                                                                                                  1/3 cup Joyva Tahini
                                                                                                  5 medium-sized, or normal-sized garlic cloves
                                                                                                  3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
                                                                                                  juice from one large lemon+ 1 T.
                                                                                                  1 tsp. fine salt
                                                                                                  1/2 tsp. finely ground black pepper
                                                                                                  1 tsp. cumin powder (I used toasted organic)

                                                                                                  Pour 1/2 cup oil in blender, add garlic cloves and process till finely blended.
                                                                                                  Add all other ingredients (except peas and 1/4 cup oil) and blend. Now you have a well-blended seasoning base.
                                                                                                  Add chick peas slowly to blender and add last oil, as necessary, to keep the hummus moving and achieve the consistency you want. Ours was creamy and most slid out of the blender.
                                                                                                  Place in attractive bowl or just pass around the blender's container!

                                                                                                  I want to thank jfood again for the thread (and for all the others like it) that nudges me out of my rut or refreshes my failing memory of things that I have enjoyed, in the past!

                                                                                                  1. l
                                                                                                    lexpatti RE: jfood Jul 13, 2008 06:53 AM

                                                                                                    Does anyone else love the edamame hummus? It's such a beautiful green too for presentation. Recipe is the same, just use soybeans. Hubby likes it better than traditional hummus.

                                                                                                    1. andytee RE: jfood May 4, 2009 11:05 AM

                                                                                                      well, your basic ingredient list is right on - chickpeas, tahini, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and maybe a little water or bean liquid. keep playing with proportions and you will get there.

                                                                                                      i find that the quality of the two main ingredients - chickpeas and tahini - can make a big difference in the finished dish. i much prefer to cook the chickpeas myself, from dried beans. a great money saver, and you can get them just as soft as you want, which really helps.

                                                                                                      also, i don't think you mentioned what type of tahini you used, but the flavor varies greatly from brand to brand. i think that joyva -perhaps the most readily available brand - is terrible. that said, if i have a good tahini, i like to use a lot and feel it adds a great flavor and texture. the arrowhead mills brand tahini is available in a lot of health food type stores and is one i like. best bargain is to find a good middle eastern market that stocks several kinds and ask them to recommend a mild-flavored, high-quality brand.

                                                                                                      anyhow - keep it up, hummus is one of the easiest, most delicious things you can make, so it's worth the time to work out a recipe you like.

                                                                                                      1. a
                                                                                                        aricat RE: jfood May 14, 2009 10:10 PM

                                                                                                        Here's my spin on hummus:

                                                                                                        http://www.chow.com/recipes/22787

                                                                                                        1. m
                                                                                                          MarkC RE: jfood May 16, 2009 12:38 AM

                                                                                                          There was a throwaway line in one of the posts here about adding lemon zest to the cooking water. This is a fascinating suggestion. I live in the middle east, and the absolute best hummus places manage to give their hummus a fresh, lemony essence without any of the rawness of pure lemon juice. Also wouldn't alter the consistency with extra liquid. I would definitely give this a try.

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