Heavenly Yum-Hummus

Heavenly hummus? Really? I make my own and it is excellent. However, some time ago, I went to a new restaurant in town and had their hummus. Oh my, oh my. It tasted great but what blew me away was the texture. It was so silky smooth and not as grainy as most hummuses (hummi?) I have had or made. It was….heavenly – smooth, fluffy. I asked the waitress how it was made. She was clueless. She asked the chef in the back. He said no way was he giving it up. So, me being me and me being an excellent food sleuth, I determined to reverse engineer his hummus. Chick peas, garlic, lemon juice, tahini, good virgin olive oil….basic. But the method was what lifted this hummus from ho-hummus to Yum-Yummus.

I used canned chickpeas which is perfectly acceptable and in my various experiments, there was no difference in the long way of cooking your own as opposed to dumping out of the can. I did however discover there is an expensive organic brand that is bland and tends toward mush. Regular store brand worked just fine.

I mashed the chickpeas and sieved them and mixed with ingredients. Still grainy and dense. I put in a blender and then strained the pureed beans and mixed. Nope. Not that either.

I put the beans and some extra liquid in my food processor and then mixed. Smoother, but my tongue said, Girlfriend, you still have work to do. I continued. I ate enough hummus in a couple of weeks to mortar a brick wall around our property. Made my family crazy as well.

Reliving the texture in my mind, I had an epiphany – Eureka! Emulsion! Like mayonnaise – mixing together elements that normally do not mix such as an oil and a liquid to make a creamy smooth something else: Emulsion. I learned it as a pharmacy tech and I learned it in culinary school. I was about to make hummus history.

So—-below are the instructions for method. Add more or less seasonings to your taste, but do the emulsion thing. After a couple of tries, I hit on the right method. I dug in with a spoon to test the texture and taste. Oh be still my heart! Heavenly Hummus was now available at my house.

RECIPE
3 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
¼ c. water
6 tsp. tahini, well stirred
2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil, good quality
1 14 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 garlic clove, finely minced
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. ground cumin
Pinch or two of cayenne
1 Tbs minced fresh cilantro or parsley for garnish
4 tsp. pine nuts
Additional olive oil for garnish (Optional)

Combine lemon juice and water in a small bowl. Whisk together tahini and olive oil in another small bowl until smooth and blended. Process chickpeas, garlic, salt, cumin, and cayenne in food processor until almost fully ground. Scrape down bowl. Then with machine running, add lemon juice/water in a steady stream through feed tube. Scrape down bowl again and continue to process for a minute. With machine running, add oil/tahini mixture in a slow steady stream through feed tube; continue to process until hummus is smooth and creamy, about 15 seconds.

Transfer hummus to serving bowl. Stir in pine nuts reserving a few for garnish. Sprinkle minced herbs over surface and cover with plastic wrap. Let stand at least 30 minutes for flavors to blend and develop. Remove plastic wrap, drizzle lightly with olive oil, sprinkle on reserved pine nuts, and serve.

hummus1

(free public domain image)

Ethereal Hummus – recipe

Hummus

Hummus (Photo credit: diettogo1)

Ethereal hummus?  Really?  I make my own and it is excellent.  However, a couple of weeks ago, I went to a new restaurant in town and had their hummus.  Oh my oh my.  It tasted great but what blew me away was the texture.  It was so silky smooth and not as grainy as most hummuses (hummi?) I have had or made.  It was….ethereal.  I asked the waitress how it was made.  She was clueless.  She asked the chef in the back.  He said no way was he giving it up.  So, me being me and me being an excellent food sleuth, I determined to reverse engineer his hummus.  Chick peas, garlic, lemon juice, tahini, good virgin olive oil….basic.  But the method was what lifted this hummus from ho-hummus to Yum-Yummus.

I used canned chickpeas which is perfectly acceptable and in my various experiments, there was no difference in the long way of cooking your own as opposed to dumping out of the can.  I did however discover there is an expensive organic brand that is bland and tends toward mush.  Regular store brand did just fine.

I mashed the chickpeas and sieved them and mixed with ingredients.  Still grainy and dense.  I put in a blender and then strained the pureed beans and mixed.  Nope.  Not that either.

I put the beans and some extra liquid in my food processor and then mixed.  Smoother, but my tongue said, Girlfriend, you still have work to do.  I continued.  I ate enough hummus in a couple of weeks to mortar a brick wall around our property.  Made my family crazy as well.

Reliving the texture in my mind, I had an epiphany – Eureka!  Emulsion!  Like mayonnaise – mixing together elements that normally do not mix such as an oil and a liquid to make a creamy smooth something else:  Emulsion.  I learned it as a pharmacy tech and I learned it in culinary school.  I was about to make hummus history.

So—-below are the instructions for method.  Add more or less seasonings to your taste, but do the emulsion thing.  After a couple of tries, I hit on the right method.  I dug in with a spoon to test the texture and taste.  Oh be still my heart!  Ethereal Hummus was now available at my house.

RECIPE 

3 Tbs. fresh lemon juice

¼ c. water

6 tsp. tahini, well stirred

2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil, good quality

1 14 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed.

1 garlic clove, finely minced

½ tsp. salt

¼ tsp. ground cumin

Pinch cayenne

1 Tbs minced fresh cilantro or parsley for garnish

Additional olive oil for garnish.

  1. Combine lemon juice and water in a small bowl.  Whisk together tahini and olive oil in another small bowl.
  2. Process chickpeas, garlic, salt, cumin, and cayenne in food processor until almost fully ground.  Scrape down bowl.  Then with machine running, add lemon juice/water in a steady stream through feed tube.  Scrape down bowl again and continue to process for a minute.  With machine running, add oil/tahini mixture in a slow steady stream through feed tube; continue to process tun hummus is smooth and creamy, about 15 seconds.
  3. Transfer hummus to serving bowl.  Sprinkle minced herbs over surface and cover with plastic wrap.  Let stand for flavors to meld at least 30 minutes.  Drizzle lightly with olive oil and serve.

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