a cheap and easy delicious staple to have on hand, this recipe comes together in minutes and is easily adaptable to whatever extra flavors you want to add or showcase. here’s what you’ll need: two cans of garbanzo beans, olive oil, tahini, half of a lemon, garlic, salt, and a food processor. just these ingredients will get you there for a deliciously simple hummus. i like to add some paprika and cumin to mine, sometimes some red pepper, maybe really heavy on the garlic… perhaps some kalamata olives. the point is, it’s a very dependable and adaptable base from which to build to your palate’s content. here’s how to do it: [spoiler: a lot of pulsing with a food processor]

open and drain the cans of garbanzo beans while reserving the liquid from one can. dump the drained beans into the food processor. add cloves of garlic or a spoonful or two of the pre-minced stuff. a heaping spoonful of tahini. this is basically sesame nut butter, it helps thicken the hummus and provide some body. you can usually find it in the kosher section of the grocery store. next add a few healthy glugs of olive oil. pulse the processor a few times to start breaking up the beans. they’ll be pretty chunky still. squeeze in the lemon juice taking care not to include the seeds, and add your spices if you want. i like paprika, cumin, cayenne pepper, harissa, etc.. go light on the salt at first, tasting as you go. it’s a lot harder to remove salt than add it ;) once your initial spices are in, start slowly adding the reserved liquid and pulsing until the hummus gets to a consistency you like. it should be thick but not necessarily chunky (unless you like it that way!) and stick to a chip, not runny like soupy beanwater.

my advice is to taste as you go and adjust as necessary. add more spices, liquid, tahini as needed. usually a dash or two of salt at the end ties it all together. if you’re using other ingredients (like olives, roasted red bell peppers, mama’s lil peppers, obscene amounts of garlic, etc.) include some chopped in the early stages when you are initially pulsing the beans, and save some more to set on top of the finished product if you want a fancier presentation.

that’s all there is to it!

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