This post was updated 7/2015 as part of the #ThrowbackThursday photography project where I take new pictures for older blog recipes that, while delicious, had less than stellar representation the first time around.
When I was a kid, hummus had nowhere near the popularity it does now. It was an “exotic” food relegated to health food stores, Middle Eastern restaurants, and maybe making a guest appearance on an upscale deli’s vegetarian sandwich. It’s so ubiquitous now, it feels silly to even type these sentences!
We made hummus all the time when I was a kid and the recipe for me had no measurements – chickpeas (canned or fresh cooked, whatever we had on hand), a couple spoonfuls of tahini, lemon (LOADS of it if my mom was the one making the hummus), a dash of cumin, maybe a few other spices depending on the “chef’s” mood, some olive oil, occasionally fresh parsley or garlic… whatever. You knew it was right when it was right. And everyone in the family had their own preferences as far as which flavors were to be found in which ratios. Beautiful, yes?
But then people asked me about my hummus recipe… and I blinked and raised my eyebrows like… recipe? Everyone has that one “thing” they just know how to make without measuring, and this is mine. I’ve shown a few people, but not until this past week did I actually measure out the ingredients. You may thank my friends and Relay for Life teammates for that.
Last month, I participated in Relay and decided a good snack to share with the team would be some pita chips and hummus. It was a warm weekend, and so I thought a preserved lemon hummus would be refreshing. I made some, and it seemed to be well liked. I didn’t think anything more of it until I went looking for my dish after the event and was told “YOU CAN’T HAVE IT BACK! WE AREN’T FINISHED WITH IT YET!” Okay then. It was a full 8-cup container!
Then and there I knew, YOU need this recipe. You’ll love it because it’s very easy to make, customizable and forgiving. And then you’ll fall in love with it all over again when you try it again, and again, and maybe it doesn’t make it to your next picnic or potluck. Maybe you just hide it in your fridge and sneak spoonfuls until the container is empty and you need to use a spatula for the last precious luscious lemon-laced bits of chickpea goodness. Maybe. It could happen.
A quick note about the preserved lemons: I made mine from organic lemons I found at the farmer’s market, for a recipe, click here. I have seen them sold in stores, so if you really don’t want to wait a few weeks while yours “preserve”, you are more than welcome to use store-bought.
Added 7/2015: Do you see the gorgeous creamy texture in the new photos? After years of buying middle-of-the-road blenders and having them break after about a year of moderate use, we finally splurged on a Vitamix! This is the one we bought (affiliate) and it’s wonderful! We bought refurbished to save a little, but I completely understand now why people would rave about their high end blenders. You couldn’t even tell I blended the preserved lemon peel into the hummus, it was so smooth. Even if this blender only lasts the 7 year warranty, we’ve already saved over buying replacements each year or so. A totally worthwhile kitchen purchase.
- 2 cups cooked chickpeas (reserve some of the cooking liquid)
- 1 medium preserved lemon, rinsed and pulp scraped
- 1 tbsp tahini
- 2 tsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 tsp olive oil
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp cumin
- Place all ingredients in the order listed in a blender. Pulse until blended.
- If the consistency is too thick, add a little more olive oil, lemon juice, or the reserved cooking liquid.
- Adjust spices to taste.
- Serve and enjoy! The hummus will keep about a week in an airtight container in the refrigerator.