I’m so thrilled to finally find a perfect recipe for hummus. “Hummus”, Arabic word that refers to chickpea and the hummus spread that we’re familiar with (which consists of mashed chickpeas and sesame paste) is actually called “hummus bi tahini”. You can buy hummus just about anywhere these days, but most of it contains citric acid sodium benzoate and potassium sorbate to preserve freshness.
So, nothing compares to the taste of hummus when it’s freshly made. And it’s really easy to make — just follow this recipe;

Hummus bi Tahini (Yield:  About 2 1/2 c)

1 c dried chickpeas (garbanzo beans) (or 2 1/2 c canned, rinsed, and drained)- I prefer boiling my own beans, the taste is better and salt content is minimal.

1/3 c tahini (sesame paste) – I use an organic tahini from nuts.com or you can buy it at Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods.

1/4 c olive oil

2 Tb lemon juice

1 tsp cumin

1-2 cloves fresh garlic- better than garlic powder

3/4 tsp salt (use less if using canned chickpeas)

3 Tb water, or more as needed (added in 1 Tb increments)

Soak the chickpeas overnight in cold water.  After soaking overnight, bring the chickpeas up to a boil and simmer them for about an hour (or until they’re easy to mash); drain the chickpeas. In a food processor, pulse the chickpeas 10 times (1 second per pulse).  At this point, the chickpeas will still be a little lumpy.  Add all remaining ingredients except the water to the food processor and process until smooth.  Add water one tablespoon at a time with the food processor on, until you achieve your desired consistency.

Hummus Toppings:  When serving it as a dip (with pita or veggies), I usually top my hummus (for visual effect and a little more flavor) with a drizzle of olive oil.  After that, you can really go crazy with the toppings.  Here are some of my favorites:  paprika, green olives, minced parsley or toasted pine nuts.

Flavored Hummus:  I typically use this recipe as a base for any flavor hummus you can think of.  Other fun flavors to play with are roasted garlic, roasted red pepper, sun-dried tomato, feta and black olive, avocado and cilantro or anything else you think would be good.