Jerusalem Hummus

I’ve made many, many batches of hummus in my life. I’ve searched for the best authentic recipes, but I’ve also devised shortcuts for quick fixes.

This recipe is adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi’s book “Jerusalem” as featured on the New York Times. It is one of the best recipes for hummus that I’ve ever come across, and the way he serves it, with crushed olives, toasted pine nuts, chopped parsley and olive oil, is absolutely exquisite. When you have a bowl of hummus like this in front of you with fresh bread, it becomes a full meal, a celebration of “the simple feast”.

I don’t add as much tahini (Yotam uses 1 cup of tahini for a batch of 250g dried chickpeas), but I firmly believe that adding water and lots of lemon juice to get the right texture works a lot better than adding olive oil. Also, I process the hummus for at least 5 minutes in my processor to create a super creamy result – you shouldn’t have any gritty pieces left at all. Scrape down the sides a couple of times and continue to process. Check for a change in colour from medium sand-beige to light straw.

Time

  • Soaking 6 hours
  • Cooking 45 min
  • Processing 5 min

Ingredients

Makes about 3 cups

  • 250 g (1 ¼ cups) dried chickpeas
  • 5 ml baking soda
  • 750 ml (3 cups) water, for soaking
  • 1,5 liters (6 cups) water, for cooking
  • 5 ml baking soda
  • 60 ml (1/4 cup) tahini paste
  • 80 ml (1/3 cup) freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 3-4 cloves garlic
  • Salt to taste
  • 100 ml ice-cold water
  • Olive oil, toasted pine nuts, parsley & olives, for serving

Method

  1. Put chickpeas & 5 ml baking soda in a large bowl and cover with cold water. Leave to soak overnight (or for at least 6 hours). 
  2. The next day, drain chickpeas and place in a medium pot with 1,5 liters of water and 5 ml baking soda over high heat. Bring to a simmer, skimming off any foam & skins that float to the surface, and cook for about 45 min or until they are very soft but not falling apart. 
  3. Drain chickpeas and allow to cool for 15 minutes, then place in a food processor and process until you get a stiff paste. 
  4. Add tahini paste, lemon juice, garlic and salt. Slowly drizzle in ice water and allow it to mix for about 3-5 minutes, until you get a very smooth and creamy paste, almost as loose as soft serve ice cream.
  5. Transfer hummus to a bowl, cover and let it rest for 30 minutes before serving. Serve at room temperature, drizzled with extra virgin olive oil, toasted pine nuts, chopped parsley and crushed olives (and fresh bread to dip).
  6. Store in the fridge.