12 April 2013

Preserved Lemon Hummus

Hummus; chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice, garlic, salt & pepper & today a myriad of combinations from sun dried tomato, capsicum, coriander or even this preserved lemon concoction that I concocted that delivers a wonderful aromatic lemony flavour, even better if left overnight for all the flavours to meld & develop.

Hummus is my go to snack, my go to nibble pre a summer BBQ or even as pre dinner nibble for an early Autumn dinner as happened on the weekend. It was this one over at Smitten Kitchen that caught my eye, it just looked so wonderfully creamy & smooth.  I just wanted to dive right in so I had to make a batch of my own.

There are a multitude of recipes out there & a definite voice for using dried chickpeas, soaking them overnight & cooking them yourself. Apparently a nuttier flavour, a less grainy texture.  Well I had friends coming round for dinner so no time for 24 hour soaking & hours of cooking.  I used Ceres Organic chickpeas & I have to say produced perhaps the best hummus I have ever tasted.  

The best tip I came across, & I reckon the one that delivers this wonderfully smoother & creamier hummus, is peeling the chickpeas.  Yes peeling the chickpeas! I hadn’t even thought about them having skins, but they do & they are very easy just to pop off & when you see all those little skins you can see why a good idea to peel.  Don’t fret for one batch it will only take about 10 minutes, 10 worthwhile minutes. So without further ado here is my take on the humble hummus.

Preserved Lemon Hummus

Makes 1 3/4 cups hummus


1 can drained chickpeas
1/2 cup tahini paste
3 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice, or more to taste
1 small garlic clove, minced
1preserved lemon, diced
Zest of 1 lemon
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
3/4 teaspoon table salt, or more to taste
1/4 cup water


To serve some good olive oil, a sprinkle of smoked paprika & some dukkah or za’atar crusted pita wedges. Or if you want to be super healthy sticks of carrot, cucumber, peppers & celery.  Or indeed both if you like a little balance.

First, peel your chickpeas. Squeeze between your finger & thumb & they will just pop out. Place the chickpeas in the bowl of a food processor & give them a quick blitz.  Add all the other ingredients except the water & blitz until smooth.  With the motor running drizzle in the water, little by little, until you have a smooth, creamy hummus. You may need a little less or a little more.

Taste & add more salt or lemon juice if need be. Transfer the hummus to a serving bowl & place in the fridge until ready to serve, ideally a few hours or even overnight as this will allow the flavours to really develop.

To serve tear up some pita in to bite sized pieces, drizzle with olive oil, a scattering of dukkah & a sprinkle of smoked paprika. Place in a 180C/350F oven for 10-15 minutes until golden & toasted.  Set aside to cool & serve with the hummus.  Drizzle the hummus with olive oil & a little dusting of smoked paprika.

It really was very good, really maybe the best hummus I have tasted.  Creamy  & smooth, lemony & fragrant, the smoked paprika just peeping through to ad a little smokey depth.

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  1. We live on hummus as a late afternoon/pre-dinner snack at the moment. Never thought of adding preserved lemon though (and I have some of my own in the fridge :)

    1. Hi Lesley, it does add another layer of lemon, even better a day or 2 after as the flavours develop a little more :)

  2. We eat lots of hummus in our house - I've been making the recipe from Jerusalem lately. I love your addition of preserved lemon! I have a jar now (again, made from Jerusalem) and I'm adding a lemon the next time I make a batch. Thanks for this lovely idea, Mairi!

    1. Hi Hannah, I must check out the Jerusalem recipe :) it's bound to be a good one! Hope you are having a lovely weekend Hannah.

  3. If you use boiling water you get a great smooth consistency without having to peel the chickpeas :-)

    1. Great idea, thanks Elissa, I'll have to try that the next time :)


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