Hummus is a popular dish that originated in the Middle East. It is a spread, dip, or paste made of chickpeas and tahini that is usually eaten with pita or any other flat bread, raw vegetables or chips/nachos. Several ingredients are used in making hummus but the primary ingredients are chickpeas and tahini.
A while ago I had some extra chhole (chick peas) left over from a dinner party I was hosting. I decided to rinse them and freeze them to make hummus once I find just the right recipe for it. Since it was going to be an impromptu hummus, I decided I wanted to keep it simple without going through the efforts of searching for tahini paste/sauce.
While browsing online for the right recipe, here is what I whipped up. This has been adapted from this recipe here.
- 1 cup (425gms) of organic chickpeas (organic garbanzo beans) - soaked overnight, cooked and drained
- 4 tablespoons organic lemon juice
- 1/4 cup organic extra virgin olive oil
- 2 cloves crushed garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon. organic ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon organic cayenne pepper / red chilli powder
- Fresh parsley / coriander for garnish (optional)
- Blend all ingredients in food processor until smooth
- Serve in festive dish
- Drizzle with olive oil and garnish with parsley / coriander
Serve this with a pack of nachos or pita bread or fresh salad vegetables cut in sticks such as carrots, cucumbers, zucchini, steamed asparagus, beans, cherry tomatoes, etc. You can also use it as a salad dressing or as a spread on sandwiches or wraps instead of mayonnaise.
Health Benefits of Hummus:
Chickpeas, which are more popularly known as garbanzo beans, are high-protein legumes. Tahini, if you choose to use it, refers to sesame paste which is rich in calcium and protein. The nutritional benefits of hummus can be rooted down from each of its ingredients. Here are the health benefits of each ingredient used in this tasty and healthy side dish:
Chickpeas, the main ingredient in hummus, are rich in fiber and protein. They also contain vitamins and minerals such as folic acid (chickpeas tend to be higher in folic acid than other beans), zinc, and magnesium.Chickpeas do not contain any cholesterol or saturated fats. This makes hummus a favorite among vegetarians. Chickpeas are also known to be effective in preventing build up of cholesterol in the blood vessels. Apart from that, it can maintain correct blood sugar levels and help prevent cancer.
2. Olive Oil
Another healthy ingredient found in hummus is olive oil. As most people know, olive oil is a healthy fat. It has high monounsaturated fat content but low in saturated fat. This oil can thus help regulate cholesterol and protect the heart from various diseases.
3. Garlic and Lemon Juice
Garlic and lemon juice, meanwhile, are filled with antioxidants that reduce oxidative stress in the body. They also work to improve immune functions and fight of bacteria and viruses.
4. Overall Health Benefits of Hummus
Hummus as a whole contains plenty of Omega 3 fatty acids, which are great for improving intelligence and maintaining a healthy heart. On top of it all, this dish also has iron, vitamin B6, manganese, copper, folic acid, and amino acids. Tryptophan, phenylalanine, and tyrosine are the amino acids found in hummus that can promote good quality sleep and uplift one’s mood.