Hummus yum yum
One of my favorite things to do, amongst many others, is to grab a loaf of bread, break it apart and dunk the freshly torn pieces in a gooey mass of hummus drizzled with extra virgin olive oil. The best place to do it is while leisurely leaning on the kitchen plot, as though it happened by surprise, I was walking by and saw the inviting food there and stopped by to dip in its yumminess. Its not a word, I know it, but it should be. Cause it exists.
I have worked on my recipe for awhile now. Even though its quite simple and straight forward, this is the one I have settled on and do every time. Yes, you can go with the much easier and quicker option of using a food processor, but even though I thought those chefs on TV are just snobs when they sang praises for the mortar and pestle, I am afraid, I have proven myself wrong along the way. Or maybe I have just became one of the snobs myself. Either way, I much prefer the result that emerges after energetically bashing and grinding the ingredients with my own hands. Same goes for pesto.
You will need – chickpeas, lemon, garlic, tahini. extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper – optional: cumin or cumin seeds.
If you are using the food processor, you skip the whole rest of the post, put everything in the bowl, whiz it and you are done.
I start with the garlic and salt.
If I feel like it, I may toast some cumin seeds and add those in as well.
After they are well mushed, I add the tahini paste.
I use unhulled paste and that is why its so brown.
Then its time to start to add some of the chickpeas.
You can use canned ones, but I soak the grains for 24 hours and then simmer them for about 30min or until they soften.
I add some chickpeas, bash and add some more.
As I go I smooth it up with adding the oil, lemon juice and water. Yes, water.
At first I used to do the hummus only with oil, but it took a lot, as I like the mixture to be soft, not hard and gluggy. Then I tried adding some water instead of the oil and worked well. Now I would guess that half of the liquid is water and it has not been at the expense of flavour.
It helps to have willing volunteers.
The process takes awhile and a lot of woman power.
As I am bashing and feeling the muscles in my arms start to give in, I dream of eating the result and having no guilt. I have worked up for it, after all ;)
My volunteer has a different outfit now – I told you it takes awhile.
I cant really tell you the exact proportions and quantities, as I never measure. The lemon juice, salt and pepper go in as the frequent tastings indicate for their need. The tastings are half the fun, dont skimp on them. Same goes for salt, make sure you put enough or else the result can be quite uninspiring.
I wanted to take a few fancy, yummy shots of the result, but Miss Fab exclaimed close to the end of the process something along the lines of “When will you stop taking pictures, so I can shove some in my mouth?!”. And that is all I needed to just open the doors to all the hungry, heavily salivating people in the room and declare a free for all hummus mortar on offer.
And that is pretty much the end of the story.
Cause not long after, the carefully crafted dip was gone.
And only the fond memory of it lived in our minds,
and full bellies.
Til next time, our dear friend.