I remember as a child watching my Mom whip up her creamy hummus before a family gathering. That stuff would be gone in 10 minutes flat. She would cut up slices of warm, soft pita bread from a small Lebanese market in Akron, Ohio. It was the market my Grandpa would take me to as a child. We would buy Jordan Almonds and bags and bags of pita bread (I have yet to find pita bread that compares in Chicago). Hummus is the food that brings back those childhood memories and is an appetizer at almost every family gathering we have.
Hummus is made from cooked, mashed chickpeas, blended with tahini, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and garlic.
It is a healthy snack and in the Middle East is typically eaten with pita bread, served as part of a meze (selection of small dishes) or an accompaniment to falafel, grilled chicken, fish or eggplant (Americans also eat with crackers, pretzels and veggies-it is such a great dip for almost anything). You can garnish it with chopped tomato, cucumber, parsley, whole chickpeas, olive oil, paprika and olives.
My husband, who at times can be picky, had never tried hummus when we met. After months of pleading he decided to give it a try and he’s been hooked ever since. I think it is the perfect dish to bring to a party, backyard bbq or have in your fridge for that middle of the day craving. Hummus is one of the easiest, healthy foods to make. You can whip it up in less than 5 minutes! Try it out and let me know what you think, and be sure to have extra pita bread standing by in case the people at your party fall in love with your hummus.
Cook time: 10 minutes
1 – 16 oz can of chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
¼ cup liquid from can of chickpeas
juice of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons tahini (you can usually find this in the ethnic section for the Middle East of most grocery stores)
1 garlic clove
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt to taste
Julia’s hummus: I always set aside a handful of the chickpeas which I throw on the top of the hummus at the end.
- Drain chickpeas and set aside liquid from can.
- Combine all ingredients in the food processor including the ¼ cup of liquid from the can of chickpeas. Blend for 30 seconds to 1 minute (blend longer for more creamy texture).
- Place in serving bowl.
- Garnish with parsley or paprika and the chickpeas you set aside(optional). You can also drizzle olive oil over the top if you would like.
- Serve immediately with fresh, warm pita bread, veggies or cover and refrigerate.
Looks yummy, doesn’t it?
Julia’s tip: You can modify hummus in a variety of ways depending on what flavors you like. Add 1/2 cup of roasted red peppers when you puree the ingredients or if you are more adventurous and like some spice you can add a jalapeno.
What is your fondest memories about cooking as a child?