Welcome to the new week everyone!
Let’s talk about buying ready-made food. Now, to be clear, I get the point of buying it sometimes. There are plenty of dishes out there that take so much time, have so many complex steps, and require collecting so many ingredients that it is totally worth it to not make yourself.
Hummus is not one of those dishes!
(Recipe #1) Drain a can of chickpeas into a bowl to save the water, then blend the chickpeas with 1/3 cup of tahini (it’s sesame seed paste; use a plain nut butter like cashew if you can’t find it), 3 tablespoons of olive oil, 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, and 2 cloves of garlic; adding back a little bit of the chickpea water if it’s too dry to get moving in the blender.
Then… oh wait; that’s it. See what I mean about it being too easy?
A quick review in pictures:
After that, you can just season it according to your taste — salt, pepper, and 1/4 cup of parsley would be a decent start — and then just start dipping.
Making it better
Of course, we’re not done. That’s just where it gets interesting. There are plenty of ways you can adjust this recipe without changing the ingredients much to go for a different taste. Most don’t take much extra time at all. I take some of these steps:
- Smoother (#2). Emulsify the tahini and olive oil with lemon juice (e.g. blend those three ingredients together) before adding the chickpeas and garlic. You’ll end up with fewer chunks
- Sautéed (#3). Sauté the chickpeas and dices garlic in a couple tablespoons of olive oil before tossing them in the food processor. It gives everything a bit of a cooked taste, and oh man, warm hummus is fantastic.
- More garlic (#4). I don’t think I have to explain how this works or why it’s awesome.
- Dried beans (#5). Buying chick peas in a can will cost you about a dollar meaning this is already a pretty inexpensive dish. However, you can cut that cost in half and get a slightly different flavor if you use dried beans and reanimate them by soaking for 24 hours.
- Skinning the beans (#6). If you have the patience for it, you can skin each individual chick pea and get your hummus even smoother.
Making it differently
And if you really want to shake things up, you can try out some of these variants:
- Save your water (#7). Start saving the juice that your olives and artichokes come in. Then, instead of adding back chick pea water to get everything moving, you can add either olive juice or artichoke juice. It’s a really easy way to add a different flavor to your hummus.
- Go Greek! (#8) Blend a 1/4 cup of Spinach with the standard recipe then add a few tablespoons of feta cheese. Opa!
- Go Mediterranean (#9). Blend in a big handful of sun-dried tomatoes with the standard recipe. Have small hands? Maybe do two handfuls.
- Truffle hummus (#10). Sauté the chick peas and garlic in a couple tablespoons of olive oil, blend it up as normal, then stir in two tablespoons of truffle oil.
- White “hummus.” (#11) Substitute in a can of cannellini beans for the chick peas, drop the tahini, and add 1/4 cup of parsley for sure (NB. if your friends are foodie jerks, then they might point out that hummus literally translates to chick pea in Arabic; if they’re offended by this, then get new friends)
- Ranch (#12). Add in a cup of plain, Greek yogurt, parsley, chives, and dill weed. Oh hey, that tastes like ranch dressing, except it’s way better for you.
Here’s a handy chart that summarizes everything:
And that’s that! Anyone have any more variants that they use?