Oriental cuisine is full of exotic flavors with a rich diversity of tastes, aromas, shapes and colors. Simple yet piquant ingredients like chickpeas, tahini paste, olive oil and garlic gave birth to hummus – oriental paste that inspire the gourmets of the world.
In culinary culture hummus would impersonate sophisticated simplicity. It is a traditional recipe from the Middle East, mostly consumed in countries such as Lebanon, Israel, Turkey, Syria, Greece and Cyprus. Hummus is a paste made of chickpeas combined with tahini sauce (a mixture of sesame seeds with sesame oil), seasonings, lemon juice and garlic.
The hummus recipe has become popular in Western culinary cultures thanks to its variety of assortments. Also, the benefits deriving from the basic ingredients draw plenty of consumers’ attention. Chickpeas, the main ingredient of humus, is rich in protein, carbohydrates and fiber. It is a healthy aliment which helps fighting certain cardiovascular and digestive diseases, if introduced in the daily diet. Hummus is an excellent choice for people who follow a vegan or vegetarian diet as it is a great source of vegetable protein. The oriental dish offers about 7.9 grams of protein per serving. Remember that a sufficient intake of protein is essential for optimal development of the body, for its recovery and for the immune functions.
Hummus food combinations
Hummus is an ideal dish because it can be served along with other foods. The absolute delicious partner of humus is baked bread cut into thin slices. A less caloric option is to serve hummus with pita, slices of cucumber, red pepper, tomatoes, celery and even avocado. Moreover, hummus is a very affordable ingredient, i can even tag it “cheap”, but a totally underrated product.
Maybe you’ve bought hummus from the store before and never thought of preparing it at home. Let me prove you the opposite. This hummus recipe is super easy and super fast to make in your own kitchen. You will be surprised of how easy it is to prepare it yourself, at home. Not only you save some money but you know exactly what your dish contains. No food preservatives added, no taste enhancers added, no colorants put it – all organic home-made hummus. You need only a few ingredients and a little time to create high-end quality dish.
Ingredients needed to prepare Hummus
Today, I will share with you the original, the basic hummus recipe, also known as Lebanese hummus. For this hummus recipe all you need is chickpeas, tahini paste, olive oil, garlic, lemon juice, salt and paprika. This simple ingredients become an oriental paste that inspire the gourmets of the world. Make sure to use the tahini paste, which is different from the sesame oil. Otherwise, the result will not be as you expect it to be. It is also good to take into account the basic spices to taste from the classic flavor of humus. If you use a variety of spices other than the basic ones, your humus will be the result of an improvisation.
In this recipe you will find the exact amount of ingredients I used when preparing the hummus for 4 people. You shall need 2 cups of canned or boiled at home chickpeas. A must ingredient is the juice from 1/3 of a lemon, 2 garlic cloves, ½ water or liquid from boiled / canned chickpeas. We can’t leave behind the 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, 2 tbsp tahini sauce, 1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon of paprika.
How to prepare hummus
You will need a blender to mix all ingredients till a puree texture is achieved. If you don’t have a kitchen blender, a hand blender will do the job as well.
First, the major attention goes to the chickpeas. You can buy canned chickpeas and your hummus is only a matter of 5 minutes action, or, you can boil it yourself. That’s the harder way, but, give it a try to check the difference. If you intend to boil the chickpeas, you shall first leave them to soak in water and one tsp of baking soda. Chickpeas need to hydrate, that will take about 3 hours. When well hydrated, they double in size, that’s when you know they’re ready to be put to boil.
How to boil chickpeas? Put chickpeas in a boiling pan and boil on medium heat. The water should cover the content. Boil the chickpeas for about 45 minutes. Use boiling liquid later for hummus.
Getting back to the hummus preparation. Unite the chickpeas, lemon juice, tahini paste, garlic, olive oil, spices (salt, paprika) in a blender or in the kitchen robot bowl. Mix until everything becomes a fine paste. Stop the electric utensils to mix occasionally with a wooden/rubber spoon so that the humus becomes finer. Humus shall be ready in a few minutes. If you like your humus to be more consistent, first add only a little liquid. Add water/liquid gradually until you reach the desired consistency. The original oriental hummus is a spreadable paste, not a sauce.
How to Serve Hummus?
Put the humus in a bowl and add a little olive oil. Decorate with chopped parsley and paprika on top. You can choose any vegetables for decoration. Cherry tomatoes is one of my favorites due to its sour-sweet taste and beautiful color. Avocado is my second option as per its contrasting color and perfect combination to the tomato and chickpea oriental paste. Also, It works great with a hot pita or baked bread. By preference, you can top your hummus with sesame seed or with 1-2 tablespoons chopped red onion. You can go ahead and try different variations until you find your perfect version of the hummus toppings. Have fun!
Hummus is a simple yet flavorful dish known since antiquity. This recipe gained its right to stand on today’s modern tables among much younger culinary dishes only due to its authenticity. Hummus recipe will take you on a culinary journey through the Arab countries where cuisine is as old as civilization.
Hummus - Oriental Cuisine at Home
- hand blender
- or kitchen robot
- rubber spatula
- 2 cups chickpeas canned or boiled at home
- 1/3 lemon juice
- 1/2 cup water or liquid from boiled / canned chickpeas
- 4 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
- 2 tbsp tahini paste
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp paprika
- Parsley for decoration
- 3 cherry tomatoes
- 1/2 avocado
- Unite the chickpeas, lemon juice, tahini paste, garlic, olive oil, spices (salt, paprika) in a blender or in the kitchen robot
- Mix until everything becomes a fine paste
- Put the humus in a bowl and add a little olive oil
- Decorate with chopped parsley and paprika on top. You can choose any vegetables for decoration