I was inspired by a very appetizing photo by former TMC contributor Paul Goyette - this one - to make hummus the other day. The idea of smooth lemony garlicy hummus on pita bread just overwhelmed me after seeing Paul's photo.
I didn't exactly recreate the hummus in his photo (mine's a bit lumpier for one thing), but I did make a garlic bomb that's delicious if you can stand the stink. The key is fresh garlic. Only fresh garlic has enough stink power to really get into your pores the way this stuff does. Make sure that if you serve this at a social event that everyone has some or the odd man out will be unhappy in close conversation.
You will need tahini for this recipe, a thin oily paste made from sesame seeds. It's good to have around not just for hummus but for baba ghanoush and even salad dressing. If you can't find tahini in the ethnic aisle or Mediterranean/Middle Eastern aisle of your local megamart, don't go back there. It's pretty mainstream these days.
One thing I really like about this recipe is that all you need to make it is a knife and a blender. It makes plenty to feed 8 as a side/appetizer and 4 as a main dish with other mezze dishes to accompany. If you like your hummos milder, reduce the garlic or roast it first until it's sweet and brown before chopping and adding to the blender.
You can also use more water to lighten the dip in the blender, but I like it full strength.
Hummus with a heck of a lot of garlic
1 28 oz can boiled chickpeas (or 2 14 oz cans), drained
2/3 cup tahini
1/2 cup lemon juice, plus 2 tablespoons
4 cloves fresh garlic, chopped fine, or roasted and then chopped fine.
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup olive oil (use the pretty good stuff, but not the best stuff)
1/4 cup olive oil (the best stuff)
pinch of salt (to taste)
pinch of sumac (the dried sour red spice, not the poison tree)
parsley for garnish
pitas, cut into 8 wedges per pita for dipping
Put the chickpeas, 1/2 cup of lemon juice, tahini, salt, garlic and water in a blender. Pulse and scrape down until all the chickpeas are blended. While pulsing drizzle in the olive oil. You may need to stir the hummos in the blender to fully integrate the oil.
Make a ring of hummos on a plate. In a cup, mix the 1/4 cup of good olive oil and the two tablespoons of lemon together. Pour into the center of the ring. Dust spots on the edge of the ring with sumac and parsley.