Recipe 1. Hummus a la Blender


A couple of years ago, a passion for trying new things with cooking ignited in me.  Despite doing it since childhood, the past few years became the most difficult in my lifetime of food preparation.  Hard lessons of trial and error taught me much about the art.  I learned making food by following the recipe verbatim lacks a guarantee of success.  Experience teaches the nuances of the culinary craft needed for making great food.  Becoming skilled simply requires cooking as much as possible.  If this blog was about nothing but recipes, I could save time and just post links. I plan to write each recipe as my personal account of its preparation.

Hummus a la Blender

Hummus a la Blender

Hummus tastes great as a dip for pita bread, pita chips, and spreads nicely on bagels, sandwiches, crackers, and just about anything you like.  Low in sodium and calories, the fats in it come mostly from the olive oil and tahini, which have plenty of the good kind of fat.  It tastes marvelous plain, but you can make different flavors of hummus by adding spices or other ingredients to the recipe.  Store brands classically use roasted garlic, jalapenos, roasted red pepper, spinach, Kalamata olives, pine nuts, and other things I probably forgot.  I tried a few of those ingredients and others like Huy Fong Foods’ sriracha sauce , cumin powder, dill pickles, and chipotle peppers in adobo sauce.

I found this recipe on a website called Fat Free Vegan Kitchen.  Many vegans and vegetarians eat hummus for its great flavor and nutrients vital for such diets.  I am not vegan nor vegetarian, but websites and books concerning those diets provide many healthy and tasty recipes.  One time I tried making hummus in a an old harvest gold-colored (YUCK!) blender but it broke in the attempt.  This time I made it in a new sleek black Osterizer blender, made for crushing ice, with no problems.  I normally use a cheap 2 cup food processor.  It works well, but the blender makes a larger quantity.  The blender also produces smoother hummus than the food processor.

Hypertensionenlarged heart, and other medical problems call for reducing my sodium intake where possible.  Making my own hummus rather than buying it prepared allows me to do that.  It also means avoiding the ridiculously inflated prices for prepared hummus.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups cooked chick peas (garbanzo beans) (or two cans chick peas, drained)
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 to 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 tablespoons tahini (or 4 tablespoons sesame seed)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Salt to taste

Preparation

You can find this at Kroger, but I don’t know about their other stores like Safeway.

Canned chick peas work well for convenience.  Unfortunately, the cheaper store brand chick peas contain high sodium.  However, Kroger offers organic chick peas in their Private Selection line with lower sodium than other brands.  They cost a little more than the store brand, but go for less than the major brands.

Cooking my own chickpeas saves money and adds no sodium at all.  I cook them in a slow cooker.  Click here for the recipe.  I do just about the same thing as the link, but I leave out the salt and add a couple of cloves of fresh, peeled garlic.

To mince the garlic with the blender, I add it first by throwing in the whole, peeled cloves and start with the lowest speed and progress slowly until the garlic becomes tiny bits.  Try mincing certain ingredients to make flavored hummus with the garlic, like chipotle peppers, Kalamata olives, and roasted red peppers, for even distribution.

After that, I mix any flavored hummus ingredients I don’t mince with the garlic , like spinach, artichoke hearts, etc., with the chickpeas in a separate dish, then put them in the blender.  Next comes tahini, followed by the olive oil and lemon juice.  A jar of tahini costs from $6-10.  The recipe calls for only two tablespoons, so it lasts.  I never made my own but I plan trying to make and write about it.

This brand adds no sodium. I found it in the “health food” section at Kroger.

Next, I turn on the blender to the lowest  speed and increase it slowly.  To deal with air pockets, I stop the blender and stir the mixture.  During this process, I add water a little at a time and DO NOT dump it all in at once.  I pour and stop often to check for texture.  Then I add salt and spices, tasting to adjust them as needed.  I finish when I find the texture and flavor satisfying.  Then I scoop it into a dish, cover it, and place it in the fridge to chill and marinate for at least an hour.  It keeps in the fridge for about a week.

Many recipes call for sprinkling ground sumac on hummus when serving it.  The dark red spice has a subtle but sour flavor and aroma.  Finding ground sumac in conventional stores proves difficult.  After some searching, I found it in the spice section at Whole Foods in Cleveland, OH.  Some recipes recommend drizzling extra virgin olive oil on hummus when served.

Find the canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce in the Mexican food aisle.

At my friend Tammy’s request for the chipotle hummus recipe, I use chipotle peppers in adobo sauce from a can.  These have no fat and low calories but have high sodium.  I recommend about 4-6 peppers depending on how spicy you want it.  I mince the peppers with the garlic to get an even distribution of each.

With so many possibilities for this tasty and healthy treat, Please comment and share your ideas for flavors, things to dip in hummus, and anything else creative.  R’amen!

About these ads

10 thoughts on “Recipe 1. Hummus a la Blender

  1. I got a mention right out of the gate! Yay me! Mark, this sounds great – we love hummus – especially my youngest daughter. We will definitely be experimenting with this. Thanks!

  2. I’m very happy you posted this recipe! After our discussions about your hummus, this has inspired me to give it a try. I agree with you wholeheartedly about not following a recipe exactly. It’s science + art and each person makes the recipe thier own.
    Great post! Thank you!

  3. I love hummus. Sometimes I do a sun dried tomato and avocado.
    Great to see you getting back in the swing of things.

    • Cool, I thought about experimenting with avocado. I was checking out canned artichoke hearts tonight, but it had too much sodium. I might try it as kind of a cheat but it sort of defeats my main reason for eating hummus, but I’ll always try new things once.

  4. Definitely do the artichoke hearts fresh or frozen to avoid the sodium. I boil them for about 6-7 min or until tender. Also, maybe the chipotle peppers would work okay or better fresh. I like fresh jalepenos, sliced or diced, in hummus.

    Thanks for doing this blog, Mark. I have recently made the switch from eating nothing but junk food to eating almost everything healthy! I have already lost 40 pounds and feel so much better! I am always looking for ways I can expand my repertoire of recipes/food ideas, so keep them coming!

    • Thanks for the tips Jenny. I didn’t think about frozen artichokes. I only recently have the luxury of a freezer and I forgot about them. I’ll have to remember that and acquaint myself better with the frozen foods aisle when looking for other veggies, especially artichokes. Fresh seem like a lot of money for a little bit of veggie, but I love artichoke. I bought some fresh jalepenos last night and I’ll have to sniff around for fresh chipotle.

      Good for you Jenny for committing to healthy eating. I spent most of my life thinking bad health habits were edgy and rebellious, but it was all a bunch of insecure macho posturing brought on by depression and similar problems. I plan to blog about that soon.

    • Medium shouldn’t matter. Whether information comes from printed materials or the internet makes no difference on its quality. Critical thinking and skepticism means approaching information with an open mind but checking the resources for their reliability. Some think skepticism means debunking everything outright. That isn’t skepticism at all. It’s about demanding evidence for claims and scrutinizing that evidence based on the scientific method. The scientific method does not guarantee truth, but it proves the best method for seeking it.

  5. Pingback: Recipe 2. No Mayo Tuna Salad Wrap | The Cooking Corsair – Mark Plaid

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s