Homemade Hummus

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Hummus is one of our family favourites! I make a batch from scratch a few times a week and its the nicest thing to have ready to go in the fridge. 

Last night, I thought of making pizzas last minute not realising I had barely any ingredients. I whipped up a batch of this hummus and we ended up having dollops of hummus, olives, organic tofu pieces, kale, fresh pineapple and wild herb spread on pizza. The weirdest combination, but it was just delicious! Mederteranian mixed with Hawaiian pineapple on pizza. Do try hummus on pizza - you won't regret it! 

I like to do things the hard way in my house because I have the time to do so. What I do to make this hummus is soak dried organic chickpeas for 48 hours. I make sure to change the water daily and then change it again before cooking on a low heat for a couple of hours. After the chickpeas have cooked and cooled down, I bag and store the chickpeas in the freezer. When I want to make hummus, I go to my stash of cooked chickpeas in the freezer. After defrosting for 20 minutes or so, I put the half-frozen chickpeas in the blender along with the rest of the ingredients - and bang! I've got fresh cold hummus. Let's emphasis the cold hummus - it's cold so you can eat it right away without waiting for it to cool down in the fridge. Smart right? There's nothing worse than making hummus you want to eat but then it's warm, especially after the blender warms it up even more. 

Why don't I use canned chickpeas? I do this for a few reasons. 
1. It's a lot cheaper!
2. Chickpeas are best eaten when they have been soaked. Soaking helps break down the Phytic acid that is found in most legumes. 
3. Canned chickpeas are cooked in the tins they are bought in. That's why it's best to buy BPA-free cans if you really need to buy tinned food. Otherwise opt for dried legumes so you can guarantee your food won't contain aluminium can reside or chemicals leached from the can. 

Homemade Hummus

Ingredients: 
3-4 cups cooked chickpeas - in my blog post above I explain I use chickpeas made from scratch. I soak uncooked chickpeas for 1 to 2 days then cook them on a low heat for a few hours. I then freeze them and when I need to make hummus, I used frozen cooked chickpeas to make a quick cold batch of hummus!
1 cup soaked cashews (soak cashews in water for 10 minutes or if you are super prepared 3 hours)
2 garlic cloves
3-4 teaspoons tahini - OPTIONAL (do not use if you plan to eat the hummus and are pregnant - tahini has been linked to salmonella and listeria) 
1 large freshly squeezed lemon
2 tablespoons cold pressed olive oil (optional for you oil-free friends. I use olive oil for the flavour it gives to my hummus, plus I am also not strictly oil-free. We enjoy cold pressed NZ olive and hemp oils in our diet)
1/4 cup water or more
1/2-1 teaspoon pink salt
Cracked black pepper
Paprika and cumin seeds to garnish (optional)

Method:
1. In a high-powered blender or a food processor - add chickpeas, cashews, water, garlic cloves, tahini, lemon juice, and salt and pepper. Blend on a medium setting using your tamper tool to push the chickpeas down into the blade. 
2. If you are using olive oil add this. If you are not using olive oil, more water will be needed here until you reach your desired consistency. I like extra smooth hummus, so I blend for a while. 
3. Taste your hummus. If it needs more salt, add more. If you like a little more depth of flavour add a pinch of paprika or cumin. 
4. After you are happy with the taste of your hummus, scrape it out of your jug and serve fresh or store in sealed glass containers in the fridge. Hummus should last up to four days. 

As this is my basic hummus recipe, feel free to add less or more of any ingredient. It took me a while to figure out how much oil and salt I liked to suit my preferences. I like to change it up a bit every so often and add roasted pumpkin to the mix, eggplant, some fresh herbs etc. 

When you're ready to serve the hummus, garnish with a splash of olive oil (totally optional), toasted cumin seeds and a pinch of paprika! Pictured above is an easy Sunday lunch I served up a few weekends back. Potato and leek soup with gluten-free sourdough toast and homemade hummus! 

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