Hummus seems like one of those straightforward things that doesn’t require a recipe. And I agree… for the most part. I like to think of this as less of a recipe and more of a guide, with a couple tips and tricks to lead you to your best hummus yet.
So you want to serve a hummus that doesn’t get neglected with the crudites? The first step is ridding it of the skins: they are the biggest obstacle in achieving that super smooth texture. The trick? Cooking the chickpeas from scratch with a bit of baking soda makes the skins separate really easily from the pea. I learned this method from Yotam Ottolenghi, whose cookbook Jerusalem is frequently in use in our house. Besides the spectacular food, the book is full of interesting stories about food and culture in Israel. It makes me want to visit the country, even if just to eat at a hummuseria or two (yeah, a restaurant dedicated to making hummus, FREAKING SIGN ME UP).
The second step to your best hummus ever? Tahini. And lots of it. It helps make the hummus creamy and rich and satisfying. I’ll refrain from an ode to my love of tahini.. for now.
moroccan style hummus (vegan, gluten free)
3/4 cup dried chickpeas
1 teaspoon baking soda
heaping 1/2 cup tahini
juice and zest of one lemon
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
2 cloves garlic + 2 tablespoons oil
2 spoonfuls of sultanas and 3-4 apricots, soaked (reserve soaking liquid)
spices: 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon paprika, 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, 1 teaspoon coriander seeds, pinch of red pepper flakes
optional: sliced toasted almonds
Soak the chickpeas in cold water overnight. Drain and rinse them the next day, then add to a pot with the baking soda over medium low heat. Stir for a few minutes, then add about 5 cups of cold water and bring to a boil. Reduce to medium heat, and skim off any foam/skins that float to the top. Once they are fully cooked (25-30 minutes), drain and rinse well (the rinsing also helps remove the remaining skins), then add to the bowl of a food processor.
Bash all the spices together in a mortar and pestle. Saute the garlic in the oil over low heat until soft, then add the spices, reserving 1/4 teaspoon to sprinkle on top. Add the garlic/spice mixture, tahini, lemon juice and zest, salt, and reserved soaking liquid to the food processor. Then let it rip until smooth, adding water by the tablespoon if needed. Spoon into a bowl, and top with the sultanas, apricots, a good glug of olive oil and the remaining spices.