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Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Humus & Fatoush - Authentic Lebanese Humus Recipe

First, let us get one thing straight. Humus is a Lebanese original. The word Humus means chickpeas in Lebanese dialect, so no way it can be Greek, Turkish, Isreali, Egyptian, Afghani or any other culture that claims they are the originators of Humus. No wonder Lebanon keeps on winning the Guinness world record for the largest Humus plate. 

The first step is chickpeas prep. I usually start with a can of chickpeas. Empty the water from the can (but leave aside), sprinkle with 1 Tsp baking soda and let sit for 30 minutes.

Then, without rinsing, put the chickpeas into a pot filled with water and bring to a boil. You just want to warm up and soften, not boil further.
A good Humus does not come out of a food processor, but a manual passoire (on the left in picture) - a colander that squishes the chickpeas through (see picture below as to how they come out of it). 

Now you are ready to mix the Humus. Add to crushed chickpeas:

6 - 7 Tbs Tahini Sauce 
Juice of two lemons
2 Tbs water
1 or 2 pressed garlic cloves
1/2 tsp salt

With a spoon and your hand, mix all and taste. At this point the texture is going to feel thick and like dough. Taste it and decide whether it needs more lemon or salt.

Add liquid (either lemon juice or water depending on taste) and keep on mixing (and tasting, and adding water or lemon juice), until the texture is creamy and soft. You can use the liquid from the can instead of water at this stage for added richness.

Finally, always remember, an authentic Lebanese humus...
- uses only chickpeas
- does not have too much garlic
- does not take pepper
- is soft and creamy
- is sprinkled with paprika or olive oil
- is eaten with pita bread!


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