Hummus Among Us

Hummus Among Us

Homemade hummus is zingy and wholesome, and wildly inexpensive. It makes an ideal lunch-box addition with a handful of carrot sticks and pita chips, and also makes a great sandwich spread. Moreover, you can keep all the ingredients on-hand, and you can make it just the way you like it. For me, and I realize this is heresy, that means no tahini. But I do use plenty of olive oil and lemon juice and garlic and salt. And if I have fresh mint, I use that too (if I don't, I add a bit of lemon zest instead). Plus, I add a tablespoon of pomegranate molasses (that link is the actual brand I love) which is a deliciously tart syrup you can buy at middle-Eastern markets or even at Whole Foods.

Yield: 2 cups
Total time: 5 minutes

Ingredients

1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained
1 clove garlic, smashed and peeled
1 teaspoon kosher salt (use more or less, depending on how bland your chickpeas start out)
Juice of half a lemon (plus some of its grated zest if you don't have any herbs)
1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses (or skip it and add more lemon juice to taste -- just don't substitute regular molasses, which is nothing like it!)
A few fresh mint sprigs, finely chopped (parsley is good too)
1/3 cup flavorful olive oil
Hot water (about 2 tablespoons)

Directions

  1. In the bowl of a food processor with the metal blade, whir together the chickpeas, garlic, salt, lemon juice (and zest), pomegranate syrup, and mint, stopping to scrape down the bowl with a rubber spatula, until the mixture makes a coarse mash.
  2. With the motor running, drizzle the olive oil through the feed tube until the mixture is smooth. Scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula, then, with the motor running again, drizzle in hot water, a tablespoon at a time (up to 3 tablespoons), until the mixture turns very creamy.
  3. Now taste the hummus and add more salt and lemon juice if it needs a little extra zing -- you really want to err on the side of over-seasoning, since the main crime of bad hummus is blandness.
  4. Serve your perfectly seasoned dip with pita or chips and raw vegetables.

Read more about Catherine making hummus with her family.

See all recipes from Catherine Newman's "Dalai Mama Dishes" blog.

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