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Hummus Recipes 101

George’s Hummus


1 can (15 oz) chickpeas

2-4 Tablespoons Tahini (ground sesame paste)

1.25 fl oz lemon juice (or the juice of one whole lemon)

1 clove fresh garlic cumin, salt, and Zhug (hot pepper sauce) to taste

olive oil to garnish

Empty the can of cooked chickpeas into a blender together with some of the liquid, only enough to blend if stirred periodically. Peel and add the clove of garlic, and blend until smooth. Empty into a mixing bowl. Stir in the Tahini to taste and mix to achieve uniform color. Then, stir in the lemon juice. Add the spices to taste. Garnish with olive oil. Sprinkle with paprika if desired.

Tips: Fresh lemon juice and fresh garlic make a big difference! Also, the order of adding Tahini first and then lemon juice is critical. Bete’avon!


Zhug (Yemenite hot sauce)


2 full heads of garlic (many cloves)

10 long thin fresh red hot peppers (cayenne)

2 teaspoons ground black pepper

8 pods of cardamom (hel) or 2 teaspoons of ground cardamom

3 tablespoons ground caraway seed (kimmel)

1 bunch fresh coriander leaves (cilantro)

salt to taste

small amount of water just to blend

Peel the cloves of garlic. Rinse the hot peppers, chop the ends off, and remove the seeds (be careful not to get the hot pepper juice on your hands or eyes!). Prepare the spices: peel the pods of cardamom, grind the caraway seeds first in dry blender, and rinse the coriander leaves. Place all into a blender, together with the spices and a small amount of water. Blend until smooth, stopping as necessary to force the mixture down into the blades. Taste on a cracker. Add more spices as desired, and finish blending until smooth. Store in a sealed glass jar in the refrigerator. Ready after the flavors have time to mellow together for a day or two.

Tips: Delicious for enhancing the flavor of hummus, or as an additional dip. Adjust the number of hot peppers to your taste. Zhug will keep in the refrigerator for 3 month, or may be frozen for longer. Fresh cayenne peppers are locally in season at the end of the summer.


MIT Hillel

Phone: 617-253-2982

MIT Hillel
Muriel and Norman B. Leventhal
Center for Jewish Life

40 Massachusetts Ave, Building W11
Cambridge, MA 02139

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