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Old 07-13-2006, 11:22 PM   #1
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How the HECK do you get smooth hummus?

Hey all,

I've tried no less than a dozen various ways to make hummus, used recipes out of Turkish cookbooks, from the food channel, Mediterranean cookbooks, canned chickpeas, white beans, dried then soaked chickpeas, etc. I've altered ratios of water, tahini sauce, chickpeas, and lemon juice, but I just can't seem to get the **** little beans to break down completely so they're nice and smooth.

I use a cuisinart to make the dip. I've tried everything from pulsing to letting it run for five minutes at a time. I've also put all the ingredients in before turning it on, fed it slowly, or turned it on and then put everything in. I can make the dip liquid, but it's still chunky... just really runny, which is no good either.

If you've made this dip, how have you gotten it smooth? I will be forever grateful to you, as I'm sure others who have labored over hummus will be as well.

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Old 07-14-2006, 12:04 AM   #2
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I don't make it often 'cause I don't usually keep tahini in the ice box, but while were waiting for the experts here's one thought. Are you slowly drizzling in the oil, with the processor running, in order to form an emulsion?
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Old 07-14-2006, 12:07 AM   #3
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Are you using soaked but not cooked chickpeas?What about the beans.Try canned chickpeas if you are not cooking them before they will be too hard and will not work.
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Old 07-14-2006, 01:14 AM   #4
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OK forgive my ignorance but what sort of appliance is a cuisinart? I have been on their website and they make loads of things.......

If you are using dried, soaked and cooked beans you need to cook them until they are beyond al dente but not mushy. I find canned chickpeas can be a bit too firm, but it depends on the brand. the lower quality and cheaper they are, the better the hummus!!!

I have done it two ways, with a chuck-it-all-in food processor and a hand blender. The hand blender is the least preferred to my mind because it hasn't got the power.

In the processor I put in the chickpeas and the lemon juice first and let it run for about 3 - 5 minutes, then very slowly add the other ingredients. Sometimes if the consistency isn't quite right, adding some ricotta cheese can help.

Any bean cookery has a number of variables as beans can vary so much from batch to batch, some are drier and harder than others.

Hope this has helped, and good luck!
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Old 07-14-2006, 01:29 AM   #5
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A Cuisinart in this sense is a food processor. They make other things, but food processors often go by the misnomer "cuisinart."

Cooking the beans was actually what I was going to do next. It sounds like this is where I should head. So I should buy dried beans, soak them in water over night, and then boil them until they are just past al dente? Or canned beans, drain them, then boil them until they are just past al dente? Ooor, should I cook them some other way?

Thanks for the prompt replies, everyone.
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Old 07-14-2006, 01:33 AM   #6
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I agree the problem seems to be with the beans.

We ususally make hummus with the canned variety, without further cooking, and have never had a problem.

And we make the stuff fairly regularly.

Might just give it a try.
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Old 07-14-2006, 01:38 AM   #7
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If your ingredients are not cooked and soft other than than the garlic etc you will have problems,
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Old 07-14-2006, 01:57 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpmcgrew
If your ingredients are not cooked and soft other than than the garlic etc you will have problems,
Hmm okay. Cool, thanks for the responses everyone. I will definitely have to try cooking the beans next time. I've got the flavor down, but a chunky texture really detracts from the overall dish.

I'll post results here when I try it again. Just made a big (flopped) batch, so it'll probably be a little while before I delve into the chickpea bin at the market.
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Old 07-14-2006, 05:25 PM   #9
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If using dried chickpeas soaking alone is definitely not enough, they need to be cooked for at least an hour. And no salt.................adding salt toughens the chickpeas.

I was worried a cuisinart was a blender rather than a processor.....that would have been an easy answer to your problems though!
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Old 07-14-2006, 05:40 PM   #10
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As skilletlicker said, make sure to slowly drizzle the olive oil in. This will make a big difference.
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