An easy and delicious recipe to make hummus which is creamy, lightly spiced with turmeric & tinged with a hint of sweetness from caramelised onion. Serve with tortilla chips or pitta bread.
Disclaimer : The Turmeric Powder used for this recipe was gifted by Buy Wholefoods On-Line. However, I received no other payment towards the development of the recipe or towards publication. All content and views expressed are entirely my own. (AD)
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How to Make Hummus at Home – what you need to know to get the BEST Hummus
Do you make hummus at home? If not, ask yourself the question ‘why?’ Seriously… It’s so easy. Once you’ve done it a couple of times and you realise not only how simple it is, but (more importantly) how much better it tastes than the stuff you buy in the supermarket, you’ll wonder why you buy it at all!
To be fair, we do actually still buy it… for convenience. Although hummus IS really easy to make, it still takes a little more effort than slinging it in the trolley. And time is precious. But having worked out just how much nicer home-made hummus is, I definitely find myself writing ‘chickpeas’ on the shopping list far more often than ‘houmous’.
So what do you need to know to make the best hummus?
Key ingredients for a Hummus Recipe
Hummus is fundamentally made from simple ingredients. Most often these are cooked (canned) chickpeas, tahini (toasted ground sesame seed kernels), garlic, a little lemon juice and a little oil. But there are many variations and hummus is as flexible as your tastebuds are interested.
The humble hummus recipe might include all manner of veg, which will not only vary the flavour, but will offer a rainbow of colour options too. Some hummus will have herbs added, whilst others (like this one) are spiced. Nuts can be added to change the flavour notes and different oils can also bring subtle enhancements to tantalise the palate. In another of my Home-Made Houmous recipes, I use walnut oil. The options are endless…
But whatever else you add, always make sure that your garlic is fresh, your lemon juice comes from the fruit and not from a bottle and your oil is pure… the best quality you can find. Chickpeas and tahini are canned and jarred!
Equipment Needed to Make Hummus
To make the best hummus (and by best, I mean smooth, creamy and delivering a complex of flavours that bounce around the tongue), the only critical piece of equipment that you need is a really good, powerful food processor or blender. Sure you can make hummus with any old blender, but if you want to get it smooth, light and truly decadent, then power and ample time are your key requirements.
For the Best Hummus, Texture is Everything
When it comes to making the best hummus, smooth is good! There’s nothing wrong with coarse hummus (and that may be your preference), but to get a thick and creamy dip, there are a couple of extra ‘rules’ you may want to consider.
Whip your tahini with the lemon juice for a couple of minutes before adding anything else. Adding a little air at this stage will lighten the blend.
When you make hummus, be sure to leave the blender running for a good few minutes with all the ingredients added, to allow enough time to get a really smooth paste. You may need to scrape down the sides a couple of times to ensure all ingredients are fully incorporated. Do a taste check and if it’s not completely smooth… blend again!
Judge the thickness and flavour by sight and taste. Once blended, if your hummus feels too thick, add a drop of cold water and blend again. If it needs more seasoning, trust your taste buds and adjust as you think right.
An Extra Consideration
If you want to be truly OCD about smoothness, you could consider peeling the chickpeas before blending into your hummus recipe… Although tinned chickpeas have often lost some of their skins during processing anyway. For the amount of reward, I personally don’t think peeling tinned chickpeas is worth the effort… but I won’t judge!
Jazz It Up… with Caramelised Onion & Turmeric
But why stop at basic when you can make hummus so much more interesting? I love adding vegetables (roasted for intensity of flavour and softness), as well as herbs and spices to jazz up the basic recipe.
Hummus Inspired by Travel
This particular Caramelised Onion and Turmeric hummus is mind-blowingly good.
Inspired by trips to Egypt and Morocco, it is a hummus recipe infused with the deep, rich flavour of Turmeric (which also gives it the beautiful golden hue), a little warming smoked Paprika and onion which has been sweetened by cooking and caramelising before blending into the dip.
I have a particular love of North Africa which stems back to an obsession with Tutankhamun when I was a child. Several visits to Egypt, have taken me to different parts of the country on each occasion. I have climbed Mount Sinai to see the sun rise, sailed from Aswan to Luxor on a traditional felucca and walked inside the depths of the pyramids.
I’ve taken to the air at dawn in a hot air balloon over Luxor and swum with the fish in Dahab. It has been my privilege to trek with Bedouins on camels through a sandstorm and to watch beautiful shooting stars cross the night sky’s infinity whist spending tentless nights in the White desert. It is perhaps no surprise then, that I met my husband whilst travelling in this beloved place.
But it is the sounds, smells and flavours of a country that always stick with me. And the spices of Egypt remain etched in my culinary memory, leaping to inspire in so many ways.
This caramelised onion and turmeric hummus recipe is there… back on a felucca with new-found friends in my 20’s as the sun sets, readying to sleep under the stars and wondering what delights a new day would bring.
Why Caramelise the Onions?
This particular hummus recipe requires that you caramelise the onions. The reasons for this are straight forward. Raw onions (however yummy) can be harsh and can leave you feeling as though your taste-buds have been stripped. Caramelising them not only removes the raw intensity, but adds a depth and slight sweetness which marries perfectly with the other ingredients.
The same principles apply to the garlic you add too. When I make hummus (and this recipe is no exception) I usually add a careful balance of garlic that is raw. However, if raw garlic is too much for you, simply roast it before adding. Or in this case… simply peel and quarter your garlic cloves and caramelise with the onions in the pan.
What’s so Good About Turmeric?
In recent years there has been a lot of fuss made about Turmeric (a root-spice which belongs to the ginger family). Perhaps with good reason. Apparently it contains an incredible substance called Curcumin which may just have magic health properties, including the potential to prevent heart disease, Alzheimer’s and cancer. Although to get its full potency, the Curcumin is best extracted into a more-intense dose, there are indications that its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties may also help improve symptoms of depression and arthritis. This Healthline Article on the medicinal qualities of Turmeric and Curcumin lists no less than 10 potential health benefits.
Not convinced? Even Cancer Research UK is discussing Turmeric for its potential to support cancer prevention and treatment. Curcumin it seems, should not be dismissed.
I was fortunate in being gifted a bag of beautiful organic Turmeric powder from Buy Wholefoods Online to experiment with (AD), which was perfect for this hummus recipe. But it has also found its way into my totally divine Cranberry & Apricot Seeded Flapjacks. And is a key ingredient in my Vegan Keema recipe.
Grab a Blender and Make Hummus
But for now… grab a blender and make this incredible North-African inspired Caramelised Onion and Turmeric Hummus. It blew my mind… but will it blow yours? Perfect served with some easy home-made soft gluten free Roti Flatbread.
Caramelised Onion & Turmeric Houmous – Recipe to make Hummus at home
- chopping board
- sharp vegetable knife
- non-stick saucepan + hob
- good high-powered blender
- serving bowl
- 1 large onion
- ½ tbsp balsamic vinegar
- ½ tsp brown sugar
- ½ tbsp olive oil may need a drizzle more
Hummus additional ingredients
- 400 g tinned chickpeas (I tin) drained and rinsed
- 2½ tbsp tahini
- 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice equivalent to 60 ml
- 1 clove garlic – medium to large chopped
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- ½ tsp fine sea salt
- 1½ tsp turmeric powder
- ½ tsp paprika powder preferably smoked paprika
- 1½ tbsp cold water
Caramelised Onion (start by setting your onion to caramelise)
- Finely slice your onion and place in a saucepan set over a medium heat, stirring frequently.
- When the onion is becoming transparent, add the balsamic vinegar and brown sugar to the pan and stir through.
- Turn the heat down slightly and leave to soften and caramelise (about 8 minutes), stirring intermittently.
- Whilst the onion is cooking, measure the tahini and lemon juice straight into the blender and blend for a couple of minutes until light and pale.
- Next, measure all other ingredients into the blender (reserving a few chickpeas to use as garnish).
- Once the onion is cooked, remove from the heat and stir to release steam and cool for a couple of minutes. Reserve a heaped teaspoon of caramelised onion to use as garnish.
- Add the onion to the blender with the rest of the ingredients and blend until really smooth (scraping down the sides as necessary).
- Taste and adjust the flavour according to personal preference and re-blend (maybe needs a little more salt/lemon juice/spice). If the hummus is too thick, add a drop of cold water before re-blending.
- Transfer the hummus to a serving bowl and garnish with the reserved chickpeas, onion, and a pinch of turmeric and paprika.
- Serve with sliced toasted pitta bread or tortilla chips.
© 2019-2023 Kate Dowse All Rights Reserved – Do not copy or re-publish this recipe or any part of this recipe on any other blog, on social media or in a publication without the express permission of Gluten Free Alchemist
Gluten free AND Vegan (or thinking of heading that way?) – check out my post on Gluten Free Vegan – Surviving Veganuary and Beyond. And for lots more gluten free inspiration, visit our Gluten Free Recipe Book Index.