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Thursday, November 12, 2009


There are countless ways to make delicious bean purees that can be used as dips, sandwhich spreads, taco fillings and as many culinary uses as your imagination can conjure up. Hummous, of course, is the middle eastern bean spread made from garbanzos (also known as chickpeas). Another very easy dish to prepare yet how many times have you tried packaged or homemade hummous that lacked much depth of flavor. There is simply no excuse to make bad food, especially for those of us who live in the San Francisco bay area, a place renowned for 12 months/year of delightful local harvest and a plethora of access to pretty much any kind of ingredient we need.
As always, the secret to the results of your dish, rely wholly on the quality of your ingredients and of course, some techniques can help.

There are infinite versions of this recipe! Vary the spices and find your own method. This is my basic recipe

1 cup dried garbanzos, soaked overnight, pressure cooked for 15 minutes, and drained
1/2 cup very high quality extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup lemon juice
2 bulbs garlic roasted and peeled
1/3 cup roasted tahini
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp sweet paprika
1 1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
1/4 cup parsley

After the beans are cooked, simply place all your ingredients in a food processor and pulse until smooth and pureed. You may need to add up to 1/4 cup of water to help this process.

Serve on homemade pita bread with olives, cucumbers, tomatos and tahini sauce.

Canned beans taste like tin. Of course, if you like metallic, artificial flavors, then canned food is the way to go. Canned food costs more so if you like higher prices, go for the can. Canned beans take far more energy to produce and get to your kitchen then dried beans so if you like extra pollution in your meal, please use more cans and less fresh ingredients in your dishes. The choice is always yours to make and everyone else's lives depend on your choice so make it well :)

If you like more tart, simply add more lemon juice and you can also add some of the zest from the lemons you are juicing.

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