Monday, July 16, 2012

A Hummus Mood

Today was a hummus day. I don’t know what put me in the mood for this Middle Eastern dish of ground-up chickpeas and tahini (a sesame seed paste.) Logic would say it was the very hot weather we’ve had in Kansas this summer. However, I get in hummus moods year around.

As I pondered the question, I realized the craving had more to do with wanting food that not only tastes good but which also gives me the sense of eating light and healthy. After all, this savory dish is full of protein, calcium, and healthy fats. So a hummus mood can strike in the summer heat, after a holiday season of heavy eating, or just when I want something easy, quick, filling, nutritious and delicious.

In case you’re wondering, The Picky Eater doesn’t like hummus. In fact, I can’t even get him to try it. He keeps saying it’s one of those “New England foods,” which is what he says any time I try to introduce a strange-to-him dish to our menu. I did get his nephew to give it a try at a restaurant last year and he loved it! So I know my husband’s hummus aversion doesn't run in the family genes.

Yes, you can buy hummus ready-made in the store. I’ve done it many times. But when you make your own at home, you get to adjust the flavors and seasoning to fit your tastes. For example, I like two cloves of garlic in my recipe, but you may want less (or more!) Also, this time I added fresh parsley and cayenne pepper to the mix, which I loved and now will be a part of my regular hummus recipe—at least until I think of something else to add. And diced green onions make a nice garnish and add wonderful flavor to the basic recipe.  

I like to serve hummus with toasted pita wedges and fresh veggies. The hummus will last for a few days in the refrigerator. I’ve also heard it can be frozen, but I never have enough left to try it out.

Hummus
Adapted from The Big Book of Appetizers by Meredith Deeds and Carla Snyder
Makes 2 cups

2 15-ounce cans garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
2 clove garlic, chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, plus more to taste
2 tablespoons tahini
1/3 cup water
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
1/4 to 1/2 cup Italian parsley leaves (optional)
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste (optional)
Diced green onions, for garnish (optional)

In a food processor, add all of the ingredients and blend until smooth. Taste to adjust the seasoning, adding more salt or lemon juice as necessary. If the mixture is too thick, add water a tablespoons at a time until it reaches the desired consistency. Store covered in the refrigerator.
 

5 comments:

Emma @ Food, Fork and Good said...

Yuum I love hummus!! You've made me very hungry =]

Catherine said...

Dear Linda, I enjoy making hummus too. The sky is the limit with imagination and hummus. Just go for it when you are making hummus.
It is great for the hot weather and it it a great way to eat extra veggies.
Thank you for the visit my dear. Blessings, Catherine xo

Claudia said...

Your recipe looks just like mine! I do confess to buying it a lot because when I moved to MN ... that would decades ago, it didn't exist here and if I wanted it (and I did), I had to make it. New England food? What a hoot!

~~louise~~ said...

I adore hummus too and it just occurred to me it has been way to long since I mixed some up!

Thanks for the reminder...I'll take a dip:)

Gina said...

Hi Linda,
I love hummus, but I need mine extra spicy. So I guess I should make my own more often, huh. Your husband sounds like my younger daughter. She will just look and it and decide if it's good or not.
-Gina-