In the US is that we’re so blessed to have so many cultures and foods here. Having lived in Ecuador, Nicaragua, Chile and South Africa and visited several other countries, it’s amazing to see what other foods are out there.
But many countries are smaller than the US and have a much narrower food culture. The have their food and that’s almost it. So if you’re stuck there a while, you begin to miss things you can only get at home or take for granted their availability. Maple syrup, parmesan cheese, apple pie, walnuts and almonds, etc. …
Now many of these foreign foods have become mainstream, and hummus is one of my favorites. It’s easy and fast to make, super healthy, and you can easily have it for a nutritious meal. Just add some pita bread, some cut up fresh vegetables for dipping, grab some kalamata olives, and you’ve got a quick snack or meal that satisfies.
Pita bread is easy to come by and you can get whole wheat if you prefer. You’ll enjoy your pita even more when you spice it up a bit. You’ll find it’s worth the effort to make your own pita chips, and with just a few ingredients and a little imagination your pita chips will wow you and your friends. You won’t want to go back to store bought after making these.
So let’s get to the chips right away. Gather a half dozen fresh pita breads, a half cup of good olive oil or some garlic oil from our garlic confit, some smoked paprika, sumac (a lemony middle eastern spice) and a little kosher salt and pepper. Brush both sides of each bread with oil, using a pastry or silicon brush.
Sprinkle generously with the smoked parika, sumac, salt and pepper. Repeat other side. Cut each pita in half, then half again and half again into eight wedges. Place on a half sheet ban and bake at 350F, turning frequently, until golden, about 20 to 30 minutes.
You’ll love the hummus for its creamy texture, tangy flavor, and deep flavor. Feel free to use fresh garlic, but if you have garlic confit on hand I think you’ll find it’s even more delicious.
I prefer preparing my own chickpeas, but if you’re in a pinch canned ones will do just fine. You can make this as thick or thin as you want, just be sure to keep the cooking water or water from the can before you’re done making it, so you can adjust as needed.
Your observations, questions and comments are welcome in the comments section. Thanks for reading!
- 2 cups cans cooked chickpeas or 11/2dried chickpeas soaked overnight
- 3 cloves garlic confit or chopped fresh garlic
- 1 cup tahini
- 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- zest of 2 lemons
- 2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Smoked paprika or cayenne pepper for dusting
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
If using dried chickpeas, place in a pan and cover about 1 inch over with water.
Cook chickpeas on medium heat, covered, for about one and a half hours, or until completely soft.
Remove from heat and cool. Drain off water and reserve.
Add garlic cloves, lemon juice and zest and tahini to a food processor or high speed blender (Vitamix or Blendtec) and run until smooth.
Add in chickpeas in 3 portions, blending each portion until smooth before adding next. Add in cooking liquid as desired to adjust consistency. You may need it especially if using a blender.
To serve, place in a bowl and make a well in the middle for the olive oil. Sprinkle with paprika or cayenne and chopped parsley.