Sunday, December 5, 2010

Extra Creamy Hummus




I really really love hummus, and I've tried (and failed) many times to replicate the incredibly creamy dreamy hummus from one of our favorite little restaurants in Chicago's Irving Park neighborhood (Salam Restaurant on Kedzi - they have great falafels too!). In my quest for the perfect hummus I've used canned chickpeas, I've cooked my own, I've even laboriously peeled the "skin" off each individual bean! They were all good, but not great. A few months ago I came across a blog that proclaimed to have found the secret to creamy restaurant style hummus - you first combine the tahini and lemon juice until you have a thick white paste, then you puree in the chickpeas. The recipe called for more tahini than I usually use and an awful lot of lemon juice, but I went and gave it a shot. Long story short, it was inedibly sour! So, I started over, did a little tweaking and came up with a really tasty dip. I kept the extra tahini, scaled back the lemon juice, and added in some butternut squash puree.

To be honest, this is really nothing like the hummus from Salam restaurant, but it is yummy nonetheless! The squash adds a hint of sweetness and makes it really nice and creamy. Overall, it is a quick, easy, tasty, festive and healthy snack or appetizer - what more could one ask for? I like to eat it with an assortment of veggies for dipping - broccoli florets (I like to blanch these for just a few seconds), red pepper strips, carrot sticks, celery sticks, etc. Of course, for those who can eat wheat, pita bread would be a natural accompaniment too! Happy Holiday snacking!

Extra Creamy Hummus
1 (15oz.) Can Chickpeas, drained, but juice reserved - or 2 Cups Cooked Chickpeas
1/2 Cup Tahini
2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
1/4 Cup Butternut Squash puree - or pumpkin puree
4 Cloves Garlic, minced
1 teaspoon Cumin
Sea Salt to Taste (will depend on the saltiness of the beans you use)

In a food processor, combine all of the ingredients expect the chickpeas. Add in the chickpeas, pulse until thoroughly mixed in (it may be a little chunky still). Then, with food processor running, add in enough of the bean juice to achieve the desired consistency.
*This keeps well in the fridge for a couple of days.

As usual, I've also included this post as part of several weekly recipe sharing events: Midnight Maniac Meatless Mondays , Making Monday Marvelous, Just Something I Whipped Up, My Meatless Mondays, Just Another Meatless Monday, Slightly Induglent Tuesday, Tempt my Tummy Tuesday, Tasty Tuesdays , Tuesdays at the Table, Real Food Wednesdays, Friday Foodie, Family Food Fridays, and Friday Favorites. Check out all the great recipes other bloggers have contributed!

9 comments:

  1. I love all the vegetables around the hummus. It is interesting that you put squash or pumpkin in it. That must mellow the taste. Sounds terrific.

    Thanks for linking it to My Meatless Mondays.

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  2. Thanks for sharing! My husband is Lebanese and makes a mean hummus. We love seeing other people experimenting and enjoying food from his culture.

    Thanks!

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  3. Hi Sweet and Savory - as always, thanks for hosting Meatless Mondays, I love being able to take part!

    Jackie - My husband is Persian, so middle eastern cuisine is near and dear to our hearts as well. Whenever we're in Chicago we visit several Lebanese shops, including a great Lebanese bakery (Sanabel Bakery) - they have the best pita bread, and it is so cheap!

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  4. The squash puree is a great idea! My daughter and I are hooked on hummus - I can't wait to try this!

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  5. This sounds wonderful and at this time of year we all need recipes for dips and spreads. I hope you both have a wonderful weekend. Blessings...Mary

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  6. Melinda - I hope you both enjoy it! Let me know how you like it :)

    fblife - thanks for stopping by, Happy Holidays!

    Mary - I enjoy your blog so very much, thanks for all your wonderful recipes and I hope you have a great weekend too.

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  7. I try to feature a different dip every year at Christmas. I just found the one I'm making this year!

    Thanks for linking to Midnight Maniac Meatless Mondays.

    ♥ Rebecca Jean
    Midnight Maniac

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  8. Hi Rebecca Jean - I hope you like it as much as we do! Thanks for hosting MMMM! Happy Holidays :)

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