A little baking soda softens the chickpeas for an ethereally smooth texture. Israelis like a strong tahini presence in their hummus, but you can use less if you like. The tahini will seize up when added to the lemon juice mixture--this is perfectly normal. Thin out with ice-cold water, stirring well with a whisk. The hummus will have the best flavor and will thicken considerably once cooled.
1 cup dried chickpeas
1 teaspoon baking soda
6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
4 garlic cloves, grated
1 cup tahini (roasted sesame seed paste), stirred well
1/2 cup ice water, or more as needed
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
How to Make It
Place chickpeas in a large bowl; cover with water to 2 inches above chickpeas. Soak overnight at room temperature.
Drain chickpeas. Place chickpeas and baking soda in a large Dutch oven. Add enough water to cover chickpeas by 4 inches (about 5 cups); bring to a boil. Skim any residue that rises to the surface. Reduce heat to medium; cover and simmer 50 minutes or until chickpeas are very tender. Drain.
Combine juice and garlic in a medium bowl; let stand 10 minutes. Add tahini, stirring with a whisk. Add ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, stirring with a whisk after each addition until tahini mixture falls off whisk in thick ribbons.
Place chickpeas in a food processor. Add tahini mixture; process until very smooth. Add salt and cumin; process to combine. Place hummus in an airtight container; refrigerate 2 hours or up to overnight.
I have made this four times now in a matter of two weeks. I love the more pronounced tahini taste and I'm so glad to say that this is the best hummus I've ever eaten anywhere! I made the tahini in the food processor (so easy btw...just toast 1 cup + 6 TBs sesame seeds on the stovetop then process with about 6 TBs of olive oil) so then just added the remaining ingredients and blended it all. I think the key is that the baking soda really softens up those chickpeas, contributing to that perfect creamy texture. I wonder if soaking canned beans in water with baking soda would have the same effect when short on time. I'll have to give that a try sometime.
It is a little heavy on the tahini for my taste. And I added about 1/2 teaspoon additional salt. It makes a ton! Not sure it is worth the time and effort but I'm glad I tried it. I might stir in a little homemade pesto and see if I like that better.
Excellent, lower fat version of a wonderful kitchen staple
We buy a lot of hummus. It's something I really love, but haven't had a ton of success making. The texture has always been the issue. I've now made this twice and think it's a solid recipe. I was very skeptical because it has zero (yes, you read that right) olive oil, and it seemed to me the mouth feel would suffer as a result. I suspect the quantity of tahini is what solves that problem. I love tahini, though, and I also love the more israeli-style hummus' because of that. I think if you prefer something with less pronounced tahini, and you elect to cut it back, you might want to add some olive oil for creaminess. I added about a teaspoon of lemon zest and used toasted, ground cumin. The first time I overdid the ice water, but my spouse still thought it was the best hummus he's ever had. Not bad for a shiksa from Northern California. This time, the texture is amazing, and it's gorgeous. I serve it sprinkled with za'atar and sumac, and do, indeed, drizzle olive oil over the top. With roasted veggies it's a delicious appetizer worthy of company.