I love simple things in life and food is number one simplicity for me. Unadorned, fresh, seasonal and impulsive food … spur-of-the-moment food is my best. Having had a culinary fest of note this weekend starting on Friday already, I yearn for earthy food today. All that comes to mind, like an obsession which it is, is hummus. It counts as one of my top ten simple recipes. I’ve always felt that if you fool around with a hummus recipe, like a women that you fool around with, it loses its earthy, humble and honest appeal.
Everybody on earth may have a hummus recipe but I want to add my simple one to the mix. And tell you the uses. Too many times hummus is served as a dip or bread spread – have you tried is as a sauce-condiment with meat (from a burger to a tagine) or vegetables or as a salad dressing? No? Now please liberate yourself and prepare the recipe below and go mad with the ideas. I cannot tell you my best use of it: probably the salad … or maybe the side order to a lamb tagine … I dunno.
Simple ingredients …
A good, soft, hummus is not only good as a spread for bread and crackers or as a dip with chips or veggie sticks. No! For me, it’s best used as a sauce-cum-condiment with burgers or tagine-style stews or thinned down with a splash of water, as the best-dressing-ever for a mixed veggie salad. I often buy a bag of fresh julienne vegetables and toss a cupful of hummus into it. Sprinkled with chili flakes and chopped coriander leaves, you have the perfect meatless meal if you add a tray of steaming hot, fresh pita breads. Green beans, lightly cooked and adorned with softening hummus is a dream of simplicity to prepare and serve alongside a lamb roast … and so I can go on … Oy, mealtimes I miss the family …! Some foods are simply not singleton foods! Enjoy!
- 500 ml cooked or canned chickpeas, drained but keep about 125 ml of the liquid
- 65 ml Italian parsley, coarsely chopped
- 2 – 3 large garlic cloves, coarsely sliced
- 150 – 200 ml tahini (a paste made of roasted or raw sesame seeds)
- 65 – 90 ml fresh lemon juice
- 65 ml light olive oil (too fruity may make it tastes bitter)
- 2.5 – 5 ml salt
- To serve: toasted pine nuts (optional), chopped parsley, extra olive oil and a sprinkling of paprika or cayenne pepper
Place all the chickpeas and parsley in a blender and add roughly two-thirds of the garlic, tahini, lemon juice, olive oil and salt. Blend until smooth. Now taste and add and blend in more of the above ingredients until you love the taste. Now add enough of the chickpeas’ cooking or caning liquid until you love the consistency. Spoon into serving dishes and sprinkle with toasted pine nuts (if using, otherwise use a few whole chick peas), chopped parsley, extra olive oil and paprika or cayenne pepper to taste.
I think it makes about 700 ml but I’m not sure …! By the time I have made it, I have tasted such vast quantities of it, that there is no accurate measure left! SImple word of caution: if your olive oil is too fruity your hummus will be too … even veering towards having a bitter taste. So use light olive oil or a blend of olive oil and extra virgin sunflower oil (Checkers) for a subtle, almost sweet taste.
And if you want more Meatless Monday Recipes, click here , surf the recipe index and have yourself a feast!