Hummus is a traditional Middle Eastern dip that became very popular in Western cultures over the last few decades. It’s made with chickpeas and tahini, and seasoned with lemon, garlic and cumin. Once you try this incredibly delicious yet simple authentic hummus recipe, you will never want to buy a pre-packed hummus from the supermarket.Jump to Recipe
Every culture has its own hummus recipe and different ways of serving this delicious dip. While some cultures serve hummus as an appetizer, some serve it as a warm dish for breakfast, lunch or dinner. In my culture, in Turkey, hummus is mainly considered as a meze and is usually served with “pastirma” (air-dried Turkish cured beef).
How to Make Authentic Hummus?
- Be diligent with your Chickpeas – chickpeas are one of the main ingredients of my authentic hummus recipe. If you have time, you can cook dried chickpeas beforehand, preferably with a good quality pressure cooker. You need to soak the chickpeas overnight before cooking them and cook them until very soft. When using canned chickpeas, drain the water and place the chickpeas in a saucepan with some fresh water and ½ TSP bicarbonate of soda. Cook the chickpeas for 15 to 20 minutes until they are almost mushy. When cooked, drain the chickpeas and put them under cold running water and try to discard as much skin as you can. These two simple steps are necessary to have a creamy hummus texture.
- Use good quality Tahini – tahini is the second main ingredient you need for making hummus. Tahini is a paste made from toasted sesame seeds and widely used in Turkish, Middle Eastern and North African cuisine. It is a major ingredient in baba ghanoush and halva. Always make sure to use good quality tahini and give it a good stir before using as the oil accumulates on top of the sesame paste in time.
- Use ice cubes – You are probably wondering what’s the role of ice cubes in making hummus. It is a trick that I have learned from a Middle Eastern chef when I was working as a chef in a well-known hotel in London. Adding ice cubes gives the hummus a fluffier and softer texture. Use few drops of ice-cold water instead if you don’t have ice cubes, or if you don’t have a powerful food processor.
- Consistency troubleshooting – If you make a mistake and your hummus is either too thin or thick, don’t worry, you can easily fix it. If the consistency of your hummus is too thin, you can add some more tahini to thicken it. If the consistency is too thick, gradually add few drops of ice-cold water until you achieve the desired texture.
How to Season Hummus?
Garlic, lemon and salt are the main seasonings used in authentic hummus recipes. You can always adjust the amount of seasoning to your taste. Blitz the garlic with lemon juice and salt in your food processor, let it rest for 10 minutes to lose the garlic harsh taste. I always use lemon juice squeezed from fresh lemons instead of bottled lemon juice for a fresher and delicious taste. Using the garlic from the bulb instead of pre-peeled garlic also improves the taste.
Cumin is an additional seasoning and it is up to you how much to use it. Some recipes use paprika instead of cumin but I think cumin makes the hummus taste more authentic and special. You can of course skip the cumin if you don’t like the taste.
How to Serve Hummus?
When you serve and garnish the hummus, your options are unlimited. I prefer serving mine as a starter with lots of crispy pastirma and some fresh green herbs. If I want to have the hummus simply just as a dip, I serve it with pita bread or Garlic Naan Bread as well as some colourful crudités (sliced vegetables). You can garnish your hummus using olive oil, whole chickpeas, cumin powder, paprika, chilli flakes, sumac, pomegranate seeds, sesame seeds.
I hope you enjoy the process of making this Authentic Hummus as much as you enjoy eating it ! 🙂
Bon appétit! / Afiyet olsun!
Authentic Hummus Recipe
- ½ TSP bicarbonate of soda
- 240 g cooked chickpeas (one can)
- ¼ cup lemon juice (from 1 ½ to 2 lemons)
- 2 cloves garlic (peeled)
- ½ TSP salt
- 120 g tahini paste
- ½ TSP cumin powder
- 2 tbsp olive oil (extra virgin)
- 3 ice cubes or water
- Drain the chickpeas and put them in a pan.
- Cover with fresh water and add bicarbonate of soda.
- Cook for 15 minutes or until they get really soft and mushy.
- Drain and peel the skin under cold running water.
- Blitz the garlic, salt and lemon juice in a food processor and leave for 5 minutes (that will help to mellow the garlic).
- Add tahini paste, blitz until all combined.
- Add chickpeas, cumin powder, ice cubes or some cold water and start blitzing while slowly adding the olive oil, until the mixture gets creamy.
- Add few drops of ice-cold water if the mixture is too thick.