An Open Cookbook

An Open Cookbook

6.01.2011

Basic Hummus with Homemade Tahini

Last weekend M invited me over to discuss our lives over hamburgers and salad.  She is pregnant and in the midst of transforming the extra bedroom into a nursery for baby G, the most current name for her stomach's inhabitant.  Saturday was a surprisingly warm and summer-like day, so everyone in Seattle was pulling off the grill covers.  I started thinking of sipping white wine on front porches. 



I decided to contribute a dish that we could snack on while the burgers were grilling.  I rarely make homemade hummus because there are so many good brands out there.  But I realized I had all the fixings.  As I pulled the garbanzo beans from the cabinet, memories of the Colorado Deja Vu coffeeshop flooded my brain.  I felt like the Tasmania Devil...whipping myself into a cyclone, and landing inside the coffeeshop.  I could feel the old wooden ceiling fan pushing air on my neck and the sound of coffee beans pouring into the glass container.  The regulars were hunched over breakfast burritos oozing with green chili.  The dessert case jammed with peanut butter pie and rhubarb crisp.

J and I loved making the hummus at Deja Vu.  We would wait until the owner left for the day before making it, so we could double the recipe.  Being the responsible managers that we were, we needed to taste test our creation on handfuls of tortilla chips.


Although after making the Deja Vu recipe countless times, I don't exactly remember the proportions.  But this is a pretty close rendition.  So by all means double or triple this recipe as needed, because you will inevitably find all kinds of food items to slather the hummus and leftover tahini on.

Basic Hummus with Homemade Tahini
Makes about 2 cups

This is the most basic of basic hummus.  It is a canvas for your wildest dreams for garbanzo bean spread.  Add whatever else you like, such as olives or roasted red peppers.  By all means use premade tahini if you have it and want to save a step.  I just happened to have a huge bag of sesame seeds and no tahini, so I just whipped up a batch.  As a little aside...tahini is really good on a piece of toast with cucumber slices.


1/2 cup sesame seeds
Olive or safflower oil (if needed)
Salt to taste

1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
2 lemons, juiced
1 Tbsp tahini
3 Tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat a medium saute pan over medium heat.  Pour in the sesame seeds.  Continually flip them around until they begin to brown.  This will take between 5 and 10 minutes.  Once they become aromatic and lightly browned, turn off heat and allow them to cool.

Drizzle the cooled sesame seeds into a small food processor.  Blend.  It will take several minutes before a paste begins to form.  Add a little salt to taste.  If  it is on the dry side, slowly pour a little bit of oil through the liquid dispenser while the processor is still on.  Blend until smooth. 

In a medium to large food processor, combine the garbanzo beans, garlic, lemon juice, 1 Tbsp of tahini, olive oil, salt and pepper.  Blend until smooth.  Scrap the sides with a rubber spatula and blend some more.  Taste.  Add more oil, garlic or tahini to your taste preference.  Serve with crackers or pita bread, veggies and feta.  Assemble into little tasty bites.

4 comments:

Lynn said...

Wow! I make homemade hummus all the time but it never occurred to me to make homemade tahini!

Alli Shircliff said...

Hi Lynn!

That bag of sesame seeds has been staring me down for a few months now...so I thought tahini may just be the answer to improve the situation :)

Haley said...

Oh my god, homemade tahini! I am SO in love with tahini lately... I've GOT to try it!

Alli Shircliff said...

I have been too...I am always thinking of new things to put it on. Yesterday I dipped a pretzel in it..so good!