Like most people, for midweek convenience, I buy hummus from the supermarket. Still, it’s so easy and inexpensive to make a large quantity of it, and it tastes sooooo much nicer, I often make a big batch of it at the weekends. It’s great as a ‘friends and family’ starter with warm flatbreads, pitta and raw veg sticks like carrots, celery and radishes or, I often serve it as a side dish with crispy roast lamb, thick greek yoghurt with mint, and aubergines, peppers and courgettes roasted on the grill.
You will need…
- Either 2x 400g tins of ready-cooked chickpeas or 200g dried chickpeas + 1 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda and a fresh bay leaf.
- 3 cloves of garlic, crushed.
- 3 tbsp tahini paste.
- The juice of one lemon.
- 1/2 tsp Maldon salt.
- 1 dessertspoon of extra virgin olive oil plus extra to drizzle.
- 1/2 tsp ground, roasted cumin.
- 1 tsp sumac (a lemony powder used in the Middle East that you can easily buy from supermarkets or ethnic grocery stores) – optional.
- Flat-leaf parsley or coriander to garnish.
- If you make this with dried chickpeas, they must be soaked for 24 hours in cold water with 1tsp of the bicarb beforehand. The next day, drain them, add plenty of cold water, the bay and rest of the bicarb. Bring to the boil and reduce to simmer. They will take about 2 hours to cook or however long it says on the packet. Reserve the cooking water.
- If you make this with tinned chickpeas, drain and rinse them.
- Then, reserve a tablespoon of the whole chickpeas to garnish and tip the rest into a food processor.
- Add the lemon juice, tahini paste, salt, lemon juice, olive oil and 2 tbsp of water (you can use the cooking water if you used dried chickpeas).
- Whizz in the food processor until smooth and thoroughly mixed. Taste it and adjust to your palate, it may need a little more lemon juice, salt or tahini. Add enough water, a tablespoon at a time until the consistency is smooth but still a paste.
- Transfer it to a serving plate. Garnish by drizzling with olive oil, toasted cumin, sumac, the whole chickpeas and coriander or parsley.
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