Wednesday, May 30, 2012

We Heart HUMMUS!

Hummus. It's been a long-time favorite of mine, and a summer snack staple with the Montauk Moms.
 For those of you who don't know much about me: I've spent every summer of my life in the hamlet of Montauk, NY with my family and our summer friends, who have become endearingly known as the "Montauk Family". We've pretty much done it all & been through it all together. And our collectively favorite pastime? Cooking & eating together! But, that's a whole other topic for a whole other post. 
Anyway, why are you reading this thing again? Oh right, HUMMUS. What's there not to love? It's a quick, portable & delicious. It's also a healthy & nutritious snack, in moderation. And that's where the biggest problem with hummus comes into play; SERVING SIZE. I can't tell you how quickly I can go through an entire container of hummus with another person just shooting the breeze and scooping away. I was horrified to find that a standard 10 oz size container of hummus had about 10 servings, 1 oz (or 2 tablespoons) per serving. And those puny 2 tablespoons came with 80 calories and over 6 grams of fat! Granted, that fat comes from olive oil & tahini paste, which both contain heart healthy unsaturated fats. But fat is still fat when it comes to your waistline.

So, off I went. I was determined to create my own version, lower in fat but just as flavorful & nutritious as the original. It took a few trys and alot of eager taste testers, but I believe that I've finally created a fabulous hummus! The recipe I'm sharing today is pretty standard, with a little extra lemony kick from the zest. The best part of all is that a dip like hummus is so versatile, you can really let your imagination run wild! Feel free to try these add-ins: Roasted garlic, pureed roasted red pepper, pine nuts, chili powder, red pepper flakes...the list is endless!

Yields:16 servings; 2tbs per serving; 50 calories per serving; 1.7g fat per serving
  • 1 - 16 oz. can of chickpeas, drained & rinsed
  • 1 lemon, juiced & zested**
  • 1tbs tahini* paste
  • 1tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • 3tbs warm to hot water 
  • 1 large garlic clove, grated**
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
Combine all ingredients except water in a food processor or blender (I've recently discovered my blender give the hummus a smoother texture, so that's my new vessel of choice). Blend ingredients, adding one tablespoon of hot water at a time, until desired consistency is reached. Pour into container & chill in refrigerator for at least 30 minutes to set and for flavors to marry. Best when made the morning (or day) ahead. This will allow full flavor to emerge. Serve with cut up raw veggies, whole wheat pita, or your favorite whole grain crackers. Also great as a spread on sandwiches or wraps.

*Tahini paste may be the only unfamiliar ingredient on this list. Its basically pureed sesame seeds. Tahini is readily available at most major supermarket chains in ethnic food isle. 

**I need to share one of my favorite kitchen utensils with you: the MICROPLANE. It's so quick and easy to use. U can grate hard cheese & zest citrus in seconds. But my all time favorite use for the microplane is to grate smaller items like ginger and garlic. I love the flavor of garlic, but hate biting into chunks, especially in something like a dip, where the consistency should be smooth ans creamy.


  1. love the microplane also. was one of my first kitchen gadgets! It really is awesome for garlic and ginger. Freeze the ginger and it grates up so much easier- I use it like crack in asian dishes lol.

    Its so funny that you posted this bc I made a grilled chicken wrap with store bought hummus yesterday. I liked it so much that I decided today I was gunna make hummus so I can have that sandwich again lol. I took the tahini out of the fridge this morning to soften so its easier to scoop!

  2. Yes! that's EXACTLY what I do with ginger as well! Microplanes are the best. I used to hate zesting anything with a box grater because most of it would be stuck on the grater and not usable.

    I don't usually refrigerate my tahini. I kind of view it like the way I would a nut butter.

    Can't wait to hear about this grilled chicken wrap with hummus! Now Im hungry lol