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Jul 6, 2010 10:04 AM

Theories on what Shawarma King puts in their hummus?

Hi all.

The Shawarma King in Coolidge Corner Brookline has, in my opinion, the best hummus I've ever had. It's really creamy and rich tasting. Hard to explain in words why it's so darn good.

I recently moved and I'm no longer living near there so I'd love to make my own hummus that tastes something like theirs.

Anyone familiar with their hummus? Any theories on what they do that's special? Anyone want to share their favorite hummus recipe just generally speaking?


Shawarma King
Brookline, MA, Brookline, MA

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  1. Creamy and rich might mean a lot more tahini than your typical hummus.

    5 Replies
    1. re: newhound

      I was going to guess "crack cocaine" but it's probably the tahini or at lest a shot of oil.

      (ETA...I keeed, I keee, no I"m not suspecting them of being pushers, but their stuff is VERY addicting)

      1. re: Ralphie_in_Boston

        Haha. My husband and I always joke that it's crack.

        I think I'll experiment with bumping up the tahini and olive oil and see what happens.

        This sounds like a great experiment for Cooks Illustrated or America's Test Kitchen. Maybe I'll suggest it to them!

        1. re: kdl

          Actually Cooks Ill did hummus a year or so ago. Fabulous recipe - comes out great every time if you follow the directions.

          1. re: kdl

            The secret of the recipe in Cooks Illustrated was to blend the chickpeas & seasonings in the food processor to make a thick paste first, and separately, mix the tahini & olive oil in a bowl. Then drizzle the tahini/oil mixture into the chickpeas while the processor's running.

            1. re: Boston_Otter

              I think this works pretty well, but I did end up having a tahini "incident" on Friday when I did this recipe and tried to get the tahini-oil mixture to drip through the tiny pinhole in the feed tube. Sadly, globs of it ran out over the top and streamed down the entire machine. Turns out the tahini's a leeetle too thick.

      2. could it be the brand of tahini they use?

        13 Replies
        1. re: cassoulady

          Haven't tried Shawarma King yet, but the hummus I buy now is from Seta's Mediterranean Foods - they're at the Dewwy Square Farmer's Market on Thursdays (and Mondays at City Hall, Tuesdays at Copley Square, and Wednesdays at Davis Square). Tahini is the first ingredient in thier hummus, so it's really creamy. The woman at the booth (Seta?) will give you a sample - & has samples of most of her other products. My hubby LOVES the Metch, which is bulghur wheat with tomato & spices. Grab either one - or both - & some pita bread she sells at her booth (made locally too) & you have a great little picnic lunch.

          1. re: southie_chick

            my current from-a-store favorite is trader joe's mediterranean., topped with pine nuts.

            have no idea what they're doing, but the stuff's good enough to eat with a spoon, which i'm not embarrassed to say, i do way too often.

            1. re: southie_chick

              I wonder if this is the same Seta from House of Ararat? I still mourn their loss.

              1. re: nsenada

                I'll ask her when I see her on Thursday - if it doesn't rain the Farmers Market out. Wish I saw your post earlier Nsenada - she was at City Hall today & I woulda made the trip up for ya to check.

                1. re: southie_chick

                  Thanks! I still dream about their garlic chicken kabobs, with pickled turnips. I like Fordee's version, but Ararat's was definitely better.

                  1. re: nsenada

                    A customer today told me about this conversation re: hummus. The way I make my hummus is by mixing the tahini, garlic, lemon juice and saltl first, then adding chick peas. If the mix is too thin then add lemon juice or water. I would give you measurements but I don't have any myself. You'll have to play with the recipe to suit your tastes. One suggestion while doing this is to not add too much of anything, you can always add more but it's hard to fix hummus once you've added too much garlic/salt/lemon juice. Oil is not necessary when making hummus, just adds more fat. If you don't care about the fat and like olive oil, my suggestion would be to dust cumin & paprika on your hummus and drizzle with an extra virgin olive oil.
                    To nsenada: I am not the same Seta from House of Ararat. I know that Seta and her chicken sandwiches were great. Stay tuned, perhaps I will open a retail store in the future that will serve similar sandwiches as House of Ararat did.

                    1. re: SetaMFood


                      As a hummus lover, I've been following this thread. How nice to see your response!!

                      I will try to get to one of the Farmer's Markets that you are at and try that terrific hummus of yours.

                      Maybe you could be part of the Quincy FM on Friday's--we'd love you there! :)


                      1. re: SeaSide Tomato

                        I taked to Seta today - no go for the Quincy Farmers Market on Fridays since she's doing all the work herself & is already having trouble keeping up with the demand! I'll probably do a "clam run" to Hingham Lobster Pound 07/31 so I could drop you off a "Care Package" (gee, THAT shows how old I am!) with some of her goodies as I pass thru Quincy. I'll keep ya posted!
                        F.Y.I., if you want her tabooli (sp?), pick it up earlier in the week at one of the other Farmer's Markets she goes to - she was out today at Dewey Square but said she would have some on Monday at City Hall.

                        1. re: southie_chick

                          SC-thanks so much, that's very kind of you. Figures that's one of the few Fridays I won't be around on the 31st. Sigh!
                          I will get to Seta at another FM.

                          1. re: SeaSide Tomato

                            Sorry - hubby's going in for knee surgery the 24th so that weekend is out since I'll be home playing nursemaid all weekend. ; ) I'm working the 31st in Boston, which is a Saturday - Friday's the 30th. If you'll be around Saturday, let me know - Post Office Square's only about 15 minutes away from Quincy so I could drop it off for you. I KNOW I'll probably wanna go out & grab some clams - or something "local" since I'll be driving to work from Merrimack, NH & don't get to go to my usual "haunts" as often as I used to.
                            Seta's schedule is Mondays at City Hall, Tuesdays at Copley, Wednesday at Davis, & Thursdays at Dewey - which are all T accessable if you have a day off during the week.

                      2. re: SetaMFood

                        Thanks! That garlic sauce of hers was beyond shad hamov eh. I will have to try your hummus, too - sounds delicious.

                  2. re: nsenada

                    Are we talking about the Ararat in Watertown?

              2. I heard from a reliable source that when cooking the dried chickpeas, the SK guys put in a little baking soda, which helps the texture. Have heard that from other hummus makers too but have never tried it myself. Anyone?

                1 Reply
                1. re: skordalia

                  See several threads on the Home Cooking board.

                2. I took this hummus to a party on Friday -- one of the regular, one topped with lamb, and a little tub of the garlic sauce. I have to concur, I think this is the best hummus around. Very creamy delicate texture and I loved the pickled veg they put on top. The garlic sauce is great, a little less "biting" than the one I get from Arax. Maybe there is something more than garlic in there? Potatoes? Dried pita? I like the Arax version a lot, but theirs is strictly garlic, no fillers.

                  The hummus with the ground lamb on top was my favorite, but the regular didn't go un-scarfed.