There’s nothing like good, healthy, homemade hummus, and there isn’t really a reason for you not to try making it yourself. Hummus or Houmous is traditional food dip from eastern Mediterranean now gaining popularity all around the globe. Hummus is a fairly ancient staple of the Middle East, particularly Lebanon, and has been around for at least 1500 years. The word itself is just Arabic for “chickpea”, so what we call hummus is known in the Middle East as “hummus bi tahina”, or “chickpeas with tahini”. Traditionally, hummus is made in a pestle. It is served as an accompaniment with Falafel or as a spread/dip with pita bread in mezzeh platter or with shish touk and dressed up with tomatoes, cucumbers, seasonings, pickles and served.
Chickpeas: being a legume are a great source of protein and dietary fiber. One cup of cooked chickpeas contains 50% of our daily value of dietary fiber, no cholesterol, no saturated fats and a solid 15g of protein.
Tahini: is a paste made from ground sesame seed. This paste is full of essential vitamins and minerals and is an excellent source of protein on its own. Tahini brings some fat to the party where chickpeas lack, but it is a healthier fat, unsaturated. 2 Tbsp of tahini brings with it 5 g of protein, 16g unsaturated fat and an excellent amount of calcium.
Olive oil: is High in monounsaturated fat, low in saturated fat, olive oil is here to regulate our cholesterol and improve our hearts submission defense.
Garlic, lemon and Salt: These three are powerhouses all on their own. They are packed with antioxidants. Lemon juice also aids in our bodies ability to fight off bacteria and viruses, thus why we drink hot water with lemon when we are sick. Salt brings some sodium to the party and nothing is wrong with water retention especially when we go and dehydrate ourselves on a daily basis.
Some good additions include well-roasted pumpkin, caramelize onions, whole cooked chickpeas, capsicum, toasted pine nuts, sumac, and so on. Roasted hazelnuts or walnuts with cumin, paprika and bit of cinnamon goes down a treat. Add a bit of chilli powder or cayenne for some bite.
- Soak the chickpeas for 6 hours or overnight and pressure cook with some salt for about 3 whistles. Switch off and allow to cool.
- Peel off the skin of the pumpkin and cut them into thin slices. Sprinkle salt, chilli flakes, freshly ground pepper and olive oil. Bake in a pre heated Oven at 180 degree for 25 to 30 minutes. Wait till it cools down.
- In a blender jar or food processor add the drained chickpeas, roasted pumpkin, garlic cloves, tahini sauce, lemon juice and olive oil. Blend well to make a smooth paste. Add little chickpea cooked water if you find difficulty while grinding.
- Transfer the hummus on a bowl and make a depression inside using the backside of the spoon and drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle chilli flakes on top.
- Serve with pita bread, vegetable platter, crackers or tortilla chips.
Tahini is a paste made from sesame seeds generally used as a dip or spread in middle east or Turkish cuisine. This tahini is a major component of other popular middle east dishes such as Hummus, baba ghanoush and halva. Raw tahini is flavoured with garlic or lemon and diluted with water and served in restaurants as a dip.This spread become bitter as it is high in oil content so refrigeration after making this spread is essential. For longer storage add more olive oil which floats on top to prevent spoilage.
- Heat a pan add add the sesame seeds and allow the seeds to slightly toast. Check by touching the seeds. This step is just to speed up the grinding process.
- Allow the seeds to cool; when it reaches room temperature add the seeds in a blender jar and powder well.
- Initially it forms a powder and then at one point of time it starts to turn butter.
- Once it is powdered add the oil and grind well to make a smooth paste.
- Refrigerate in an airtight container to prevent spoilage.
- You could use garlic or lemon juice to flavour this tahini if you are using this paste as such as a dip or spread.