Everyone loves hummus. In Israel, hummus is taken very seriously. It is a culture (borrowed from our Arab neighboring countries), a ritual that brings people together, and a meal in its own right. Homemade hummus is simple to make, although it requires planning, as the garbanzo beans need to soak for 12 (or so) hours, and cook for 3 more.
Everyone has their secret recipe, but the elements are always the same: garbanzo beans (that have soaked in plenty of water), tahini paste, lemon juice and some salt. The consistency is a matter of how fine the hummus is blended, and how much liquid is added. Obviously you will need a food processor or a powerful blender.
I love to to add accompaniments and toppings such as whole garbanzo beans, seasoned ground beef with onions, diced hot green peppers with garlic and fresh lemon juice.
8oz dried garbanzo beans
2 tsp baking powder
1 cup tahini paste
1/4 cup lemon juice, freshly squeezed
1 tsp salt
1. In a medium bowl, soak the dried beans in plenty of water to allow room for the beans to plump up. Add 1tsp of the baking powder. Make sure the water is about two inches higher than then beans. Let soak for at least 12 hours, changing the water every few hours (I change the water before i go to sleep and first thing in the morning)
2. Rinse the soaked beans and place in a medium pot. Cover the beans with plenty of water (about 1 1/2 inch higher) and add 1tsp of baking powder. Cook for 3 hours on low heat, until the beans are very soft. Stir occasionally to prevent from sticking to the bottom of the pot, and add water if needed so the beans are always covered.
3. Transfer the hot beans without the cooking liquids to a food processor. Leave a few spoonfuls of cooked beans in the pot to use later. Save the cooking liquids, as you will need to add them to the hummus.
4. Blend the hummus on high for about 2 minutes.
5. Add the tahini, fresh lemon juice, the salt and continue to blend. Taste, and add more salt if needed.
6. Slowly add the hot cooking liquids, a couple tablespoons at the time, until you reach the desired consistency. The hummus should be creamy and smooth. Keep in mind it will get thicker as it cools down.
7. Serve warm, with a drizzle of olive oil and the toppings of your choice.
Note: You can store the hummus in the fridge for up to 3 days, in an air tight container. The texture will be very different when cold (but still yummy!)