You haven’t had good hummus, if you did not have it served warm. Try this recipe – it would be the best homemade Hummus you’ve ever had!
The first time I had hummus was out of a store-bought plastic container, still cold and thick – honestly, I couldn’t keep it down. It felt like eating raw batter, and not the good cookie kind. While it surely put me off hummus for a long time, the next time I braved a taste of the stuff was at a Turkish restaurant in Dallas – and I thank the stars that I did. It turned me around on hummus forever: warm, creamy, and smooth with a hint of garlic, tangy and absolutely heavenly!
And that is the way God intended hummus to be served: warm. Never cold! Oh no. No one eats hummus cold in the Middle East. Why should we? Even if it’s sold in the cold storage aisle of the super market, please, PLEASE for the love of all that is good and delicious, bring your hummus to room temperature (at the very least) before you dunk your pita into it. Otherwise, it is a heinous act against hummus and you should be tried for treason at the Hummus court.
And before you pick up your next hummus fix at the supermarket, give this homemade hummus a try. And I bet you’ll never want to have it any other way. Not only is it easy (it’s basically child’s play), it is incredibly delicious. Warm, creamy, garlicky, tangy and smooth. Just the way it was intended to be.
Good hummus starts with good Tahini – and good Tahini need not always come out of a jar. It is so easy to make, that I don’t see why anyone should use one out of a store-bought bottle! Two ingredients and <10 minutes is all you need.
Begin by toasting sesame seeds. The toasting brings out the nutty flavour and loosens up some of the natural oils. Then grind it into a smooth paste with a little help from added sesame oil. If you don’t have sesame oil at home, substitute with olive oil (or a neutral tasting vegetable oil).
Store in an airtight glass jar for upto a month – just remember to stir before use, as the oils may separate during storage. But fret not, this does not affect the taste or quality of the tahini.
Now that you have your tahini ready, let’s talk some more on making that perfect hummus.
Chickpeas are the core ingredient of good hummus, and canned chickpeas aren’t the way to go. Start with dried chickpeas, soak them overnight (here’s a shortcut to soak chickpeas in a couple of hours) and cook them until soft. Drain, but do not discard the cooking liquid.
Honestly, it doesn’t take too long to cook chickpeas from scratch but it makes a world of a difference to your hummus. Put it into the oven for 10 minutes to warm up just before serving. Be generous with the olive oil. And use a pretty looking dish – like I did with this Soapstone sauté pan from Uncommon Goods.
Once you have your tahini and your chickpeas, the blender will do the rest and all you need to do is get things to dunk into your hummus – I say start with warm pita, cherry tomatoes, baby carrots, celery and then get creative!
To properly warm up pita, wrap 4-5 loaves in foil and bake in a 400F/200C oven for 10-15 minutes until completely warmed through and soft.
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What are your favourite things to dunk into hummus? Do you have a good/bad experience with hummus? Let me know in the comments below!