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Hummus a hit for meals or snacks

Submitted by on Tuesday, 23 December 2008 2 Comments

It cracks me up when someone takes a basic dish from another country, slaps a gourmet label on it and transforms simple to upscale.

Such is the case with humble hummus. It’s been a staple in Dad’s family for years, and it cracks him up, too, when he sees the outrageous prices demanded for a container that wouldn’t last through lunch the next day in this house.

Fortunately,  it’s outrageously easy to make, and the garlic-free version is almost as good. You can dress it up in a lot of ways — roasted peppers, sun-dried tomatoes — or just go basic. It can be served with tortillas or Middle Eastern flat bread, but I like it best with slightly warmed pita triangles.

This one is categorized as a snack, too, but for Boots and me, it’s easily a meal, and a healthful one at that. Big Guy won’t try it, and this is one of the few instances where I don’t enforce the “one bite before you say ‘ick’” rule. I’m afraid his peanut allergy extends to other legumes and back off in case his body knows something I don’t. Maybe he’s just being picky, but why chance it?


  • 2 cans garbanzo beans, drained
  • 1/2 c. Tahini — sesame butter that’s available in some mainstream grocery stores in some parts of the country but more likely to be found in a Middle Eastern specialty store. You also can order online.
  • 1/4 c. lemon juice – reconstituted works fine, though fresh is better.
  • 1/4 c. olive oil
  • Garlic to taste — I substitute onion powder
  • Salt to taste

You can do this manually, but life’s too short to smash garbanzo beans with a potato masher. I just don’t feel the need to be that authentic.  Instead, I use a food processor to mash the beans until smooth, then add the other ingredients one at a time. Spread on serving platter and drizzle with paprika and additional olive oil.

Hummus is more of an art than a recipe, though. I usually wind up using way more tahini and far less lemon juice than listed here — if I use the lemon juice at all. And then Dad goes back and adds enough additional olive oil to float a fleet when he’s dishing up his own. He also likes to top it with black olive slices.

Copyright 2008 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.

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  • MtnMom said:

    Yes! You did it again! Just the right thing at the right time! I’m gonna do this for tomorrows gathering! They’ll be happy to have something different than the usual! And I’m with “Dad” on the olive oil! The more olive and olive oil options availalable the better! Yes, I sample olive oil for just the right tang or nuttiness, depending on what my goal is with the recipe.

    MERRY CHRISTMAS 9to5to9 family, with lotsa love and good wishes for the New Year as well. God Bless you!

  • Debra said:

    He he he. I actually did this post BECAUSE of you. I remembered your adventures with the store-bought hummus a while back and thought then about adding the recipe to the site. It just took me until now to get around to it.

    Merry Christmas, too, to everyone in Mountain Mom’s cabin and a great 2009 as well!