There are many ways to make Hommus and there are many tricks to making it well. You can be as serious about it as you like, i just think it’s great to make it yourself instead of buying it. Hommus freezes well so you can portion it up into containers for an easy work lunch.
You can use canned Chick Peas or you can pre-soak them and boil them up from scratch, it’s up to you. For this recipe I boiled them after soaking them 24 hours, but to be honest, I am very time-poor and I don’t usually plan that far in advance so I don’t think I would bother again, I would just used canned. This recipe can use canned instead of dried, just omit the steps to do with Chick Pea preparation.
Traditionally Hommus (or Hummus) has no olive oil, but has garlic, lemon juice, sometimes Cumin, Salt, garnishes of Olive oil and Paprika. Some people like to use the reserved water from boiling the Chick Peas as their water they add when food processing- I don’t know why! It has remnant bicarb of soda in it! This recipe used Iced Water, and it uses peeled Chick Peas, which i have read many people getting quite passionate about this in order to make the perfect Hommus. Having made it both ways I really don’t think it is necessary, you may get a smoother, lighter coloured Hommus by removing the skins, but really….. The Hommus will also thicken up as it cools down, so, you can make it slightly runnier than you would like it, but take note, with the skins left in it will firm up more than if you have peeled them. You can adjust your seasonings to taste, add more Cumin if you like, I tend to add more lemon juice, and i like it quite acidic so even a tad of white vinegar is nice. Also, use hulled Tahini, if you use unhulled it will be darker and taste slightly more bitter.
With your garlic- If you don’t like it too raw tasting, cover the garlic with a little water and microwave for about 20 seconds to soften before you put it in the garlic press.. And remember, the garlic flavour will permeate the dip more as it rests.
This recipe makes a small food processor full- if you only want a smaller portion- adjust the recipe.
- 375 grams dried Chick Peas (about 5 cups precooked- or 3 x 400g cans)
- 1 teaspoon Bicarbonate of Soda
- Boiling Water
- 1 cup Unhulled Tahini
- 4 Cloves of garlic
- 1-2 teaspoon Cumin
- 1 1/2 teaspoons Salt
- 6 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
- 1- 1 1/2 Cups of Iced Water
- Place dried chick peas in a large bowl, cover with at least three times as much water, leave to soak overnight.
- Place drained chick peas in the bottom of a large saucepan, saute, stirring constantly, over medium heat with 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda for approx 5 minutes. This is just to help soften the chick peas.
- Cover with boiling water- allow as much as you would to cook pasta, boil for approximately 20-25 minutes until chick peas are cooked through. Do not overcook, you do not want the chick peas to go mushy, however they should be easily squishable between your thumb and finger. You can look inside a split one to see if they are cooked through, indicated by the absence of a ring around the uncooked centre.
- As soon as they are cooked, pour into a colander and drain off the liquid. If you are using canned Chick Peas, omit the above steps- canned chick peas are already cooked.
- If you choose to peel the Chick Peas for a whiter creamier Hommus, the easiest way to do this is to fill the sink with cold water, immerse the colander containing the chick peas in it, gently rub the chick peas and jiggle the colander, the skins will float to the top, scoop off with a slotted spoon or similar. Repeat until you are happy you have removed enough skins. You do not need to do this, it is purely personal preference.
- Cover the peeled garlic with a little water and microwave gently for 30 seconds to soften. This is optional to remove the harsh raw garlic taste.
- Crush the garlic, use a mortar and pestle or use a garlic press.
- Add the cooked chick peas to the food processor, process until the chick peas form a crumbly mixture, scrape down the sides of the processor, process again, after several minutes you will have a somewhat creamy but very thick consistency.
- Add the garlic and Tahini and continue to process until mixture becomes smooth and creamy.
- Add the lemon juice, Cumin and Salt, continue to process.
- Slowly trickle in the iced water through the food processor spout as you continue to process until you have your desired consistency. This could be 1 to 1 1/2 cups. If you like it extra lemony or with a bit of vinegar, replace a little of the water. Be sure to check the consistency every now and then to make sure you have not made it too runny.
- Add extra seasoning if you like.
- To serve, garnish with a drizzle of Olive Oil and Paprika, or a little extra Cumin. Refrigerate or freeze until needed.