Monday, April 12, 2010

Hummus フムス

Izakaya food consists of small dishes. I mentioned other types of small dishes from different cultures such as Spanish Tapas. A relatively new restaurant, Zaytinya in Washington DC specializes in small dishes from the Eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East called Mezze (Meze and other spellings). These dishes are quite different from Japanese style Izakaya food but the ideal is the same and my wife and I really enjoy their small dishes. We usually start with some of their spreads or dips with small wonderful hot (temperature) flat bread they serve (a type of pita or pide). Hummus (it appears that there are some spelling variations since the original name حمّص‎ is Arabic-obviously I just copied from Wikipedia-) is one of these and is very easy to make. Here I made Guacamole and Hummus, a bit of ethnic mix but work well together.

Again, there are some variations on a Hummus recipe but this is the way I make it. I make this either in a small bowl food processor or using an immersible blender with a mixing cup (this time I used an immersible blender). The ingredients are canned chickpeas (16oz), garlic (2-3 cloves, skin and root end removed), lemon juice (2-3 tbs), tahini or Japanese neri-goma 白練りごま (2 tbs), salt (1/2 tsp), and ground cumin (1/2 to 1 tsp). (We like cumin but some may not like it at all, you do not have to use cumin). You could mix in olive oil rather than using it as a garnish.

I first drain the chickpeas reserving the liquid. I then process all the ingredients plus 1/4 of the reserved liquid (or use lukewarm water) until a nice smooth paste is formed. If it is too thick add more liquid, if it is too soupy add more chickpeas. Taste and adjust salt, lemon juice and cumin to taste. I garnish with sliced black olive and extra-virgin olive oil. Any chips, pita bread, cracker will go wonderfully with these dips.


Jason said...

Hey now, you can get hummus in Hamamatsu, in Shizuoka Japan,
at Tirnan Og craft pub, KK House, and Slowporch in Hamakita.

They have many flavors to choose from. The local brand is called Satorijava Traders Hummus.

Uncle N said...

Thanks for the comment. It is amazing to learn that almost anything is available in Japan nowadays. It was not like that when I was in Japan.