So what does one do when she moves to a land where hummus is not usually stocked in the grocery store? Well, if you're like my friend Tammy, you can seek out hummus far and wide, hoping to find a Döner stand somewhere in town that makes it (note that hummus is not a regular ingredient in Döner, so it's more of an exception, rather than the rule, to find hummus in a Turkish establishment). Or, there's an even easier solution: you can make it of course! And the really good news is that the ingredients required to make hummus at home are widely available, and it's really quite easy and quick to prepare. You do need a blender or food processor, and you can make it even easier on yourself by getting a slow cooker (though it's not necessary). And that's it.
Hummus with Pine Nuts and Basil Chiffonade
You'll find countless recipes for hummus online, with all kinds of tricks to make it creamier and more delicious. I've tried them all - including individually peeling all of the chickpeas, which probably does make a difference in the texture, but I would argue is not worth the time and effort. I prefer to keep the labor and the ingredients to a minimum. This way you have a good base, and if you want to add things like pine nuts and basil, it's up to you. Last, I serve it with "authentic" flare, swirling the hummus up the sides of a medium-sized serving bowl to create a large well in the middle, for drizzling in olive oil and any other toppings.
1 cup dried chickpeas, soaked overnight
1/4 cup tahini
pinch of salt
Toppings: olive oil, paprika, toasted pine nuts, fresh basil
1. Drain the chickpeas and dump into a slow cooker. Add about 3 times as much water to the chickpeas. Turn the slow cooker on medium and leave it on all day, probably anywhere between 6 and 10 hours (I usually turn it on before I go to work, and when I get home from work 10 hours later the chickpeas are perfectly cooked). If cooking on the stove, chickpeas will need to be simmered for approximately 2 hours.
2. Dump cooked chickpeas into a blender or food processor, saving the water that it cooked in.
3. Add tahini, the juice of the lemon, and salt to the blender.
4. Puree, adding cooking water 1/4 cup at a time to get the desired consistency. Taste and add more lemon or salt if necessary.
5. Serve topped with a drizzle of good olive oil, a liberal sprinkling of paprika, toasted pine nuts, and basil chiffonade.