Basic Hummus

For as I long as I can remember, when I thought about my dream trip, it was India. The dream. Fulfilled. Now what? I’m thinking Middle East. Maybe Turkey, Oman, or Morocco. Probably not Libya or Yemen! My rationale comes down to two things: hookah and hummus. Not only do I occasionally enjoy smoking hookah (shisha), the pipes are works of art. And I don’t want to buy one in Adams Morgan, I want to buy one that brings memories of amazing travels. That’s one expensive hookah pipe…

AND… I want to learn how to make hummus. The best I’ve ever had comes from the Pita Cafe in metro Detroit (did you know that Detroit is home to the largest population of Arab-Americans?). Alas, I don’t live there anymore, so I’m on a quest to make the most extraordinary hummus. Until then, this one tides me over.

INGREDIENTS

1 – 1 1/2 c chick peas (garbanzo beans) – I cook up a bunch of dried beans and freeze extra, but canned are fine too

3 cloves garlic

1/3 c tahini – make sure to get the roasted sesame variety

1/3 c water

1/4 c extra virgin olive oil

1 lemon, juiced

salt

PREPARATION

In a dry pan, roast garlic on high heat for a minute or two on each side. You can use raw but I prefer the subtlety of roasted.

Add liquid ingredients to a food processor (or blender). Then add chick peas, garlic (peeled, obviously), and several pinches of salt. I find it blends better if everything liquid starts on the bottom.

Blend away.

I like to let it sit for awhile, come back and blend some more – even sit in the refrigerator overnight and blend some more the next day. This lets the flavors infuse and makes the hummus extra creamy (also because I have a small food processor). When it’s creamy and smooth, scoop into a serving dish or cover and save in the refrigerator. Will last approximately one week.

This is one of my very favorite snacks – even if it’s still not as good as the Pita Cafe version. Everyone needs a goal…

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