Hummus is simply, and traditionally, chick pea spread. I say traditionally because you can make edamame hummus, black bean hummus, or any of a variety of legumes (beans). It it a delicious, nutritious, and easy treat to make. Pair it with pita chips or tortilla crisps and you have a snack or appetizer that is healthy and yummy at the same time!
There are so very many recipes out there so don’t let that intimidate you. And don’t let a recipe determine the flavors you enjoy. The common ingredients will include garlic (lots of it!), olive oil, salt, and lemon (or lime!) juice. After that the varieties are endless. Some go with tahini, which is sesame paste. Some go with crushed red pepper flakes, cumin, and coriander.
If you are not a hummus lover ~ yet ~ try a very simple recipe! If you are not a lover of a lot of heat, avoid cumin, coriander, and other spices with a great deal of it. Or use them sparingly, always remembering to add a little, taste a little . . . Always make a recipe to your taste! The flavors added all make the spread delicious. And they are added because, frankly, smashed beans don’t have that much flavor!
Let’s look at a my suggestion for a basic and simple Hummus. You will need:
- chick peas ~ 1 large can ~ OR: garbanzo beans, cannellini beans, black beans
- olive oil ~ up to 1/4 cup
- garlic ~ 2 cloves, or 2 tsp minced
- lemon or lime juice ~ whichever you need about 2 tbsp ~ your choice, I always opt for lime, I just like it better
- kosher salt ~ 3/4 tsp
- crushed red pepper flakes ~ just a pinch, then up to you!
- paprika ~ a pinch ~ a softer, gentler version of cayenne
- cumin ~ optional ~ we will add very little or none if you don’t like heat!
Here goes. . .
Take out your food processor, or in my case, my Ninja. Drain and rinse the chick peas (beans). If you are using whole garlic cloves, those need to go in and get a good chop first. If you are using jarred minced garlic, just throw it in with the beans. So add the beans, garlic, lemon juice, salt, pepper flakes, paprika, and if you are daring, cumin. Give this a good few minutes to get mixed up together. Now you will need to add some olive oil. It is hard to say exactly how much because it depends on the consistency you want. I say possibly 1/4 cup, but don’t add that all at once!! Drizzle in about 2 tbsp and pulse again. Use more, but add a little at a time. You can always add, but you can’t take it out!
Taste a little. Good? Then stop! You may want more oil for a smoother consistency. I do. You also may want more lime or salt at this point, or any of the other flavors. You can even throw in a few dashes of hot sauce! Since my girls went to college in Buffalo, there is always a large bottle of Frank’s Hot Sauce in the house. I have found it depends on the day. Some days I am feeling more garlic and go that way. Some days I want more kick!
Now I don’t have photos for you. Why? It is too stinking easy! LOL Blend the ingredients. Dip with pita chips, tortilla crisps, or crunchy fresh veggies.
Keep in mind as you consider your figure that hummus is nutritious and has a high protein content. It also has carbs and calories so should be eaten in sensible portion! If you have never had hummus, or never made it yourself, try it!