Hummus is all the rage. Even the price of chick peas is rising because of the increased demand for everything hummus. A recent WallStreet Journal article revealed the economics of the growing demand for hummus and mediterranean food in the United States. After literally hundreds of batches of hummus, I have found two secrets that really improve the flavor and consistency of incredible tasting hummus. Number one is quality beans. Number two is cooking dried beans slowly and that means “not canned.” There truly is a difference in flavor. Yes, good quality olive oil adds a notch up there along with roasting your garlic too.
2 cups cooked and softened chick peas
3 garlic cloves, preferably roasted with olive oil and crushed
1/2 cup tahini (sesame seed paste)
4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/3 cup olive oil
Start with dried chick peas and soak them for at least six hours. Cover with water and cook over medium heat for 1 hour. Turn heat to low and cook for another hour. Check chick peas to make sure they are soft and able to be processed easily. Use a pressure cooker if you have one to save hours of time here. Place each ingredient in the food processor, one at a time and process for 2 to 3 pulses. Process until each ingredient is incorporated and smooth. Add additional lemon juice or olive oil for a smoother consistency. Drizzle the top with a teaspoon of olive oil and serve with pita bread and fresh vegetables such as carrot or celery sticks. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Note: For additional flavor add roasted red pepper or basil pesto.