Monday, April 4, 2011

North African Hummus with Za'tar Spiced Pita

This is the best hummus in the world. I swear.

1 14 or 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/3 cup tahini paste, well stirred
¼ cup lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
2 teaspoon North African Spice Mix, see recipe below
2 garlic cloves, peeled and coarsely chopped
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Olive oil and sumac, optional

1. Place the chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice, North African Spice Mix, garlic, and olive oil in a food processor and purée until smooth. You may need to add a bit of water to make it a good spreading consistency.
2. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Can make ahead and chill. Return to room temperature for eating.
3. Place in a low bowl. Make a shallow indentation in the middle of the hummus. Pour in a bit of olive oil and sprinkle with sumac. Serve with Za’tar Spiced Pita, see recipe below.

6-8 servings as a dip before dinner

North African Spice Mix
This spice mix is a pain to make. But once it is done you have the fixings for multiple hummus mixtures in almost no time flat.

1 tablespoon cumin seeds, toasted and ground*
1 tablespoon coriander seeds, toasted and ground*
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1½ teaspoons ground fenugreek, toast and grind if you’re using chunky fenugreek
Note: You can leave it out if you can’t find it.
1 teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon smoky sweet paprika or regular paprika
½ teaspoon smoky hot paprika or a pinch of cayenne

1. In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients and mix well.
2. Store in a glass jar (like an old spice jar), tightly covered. Label the jar with the contents or you’ll forget what it is. Or I should say, I would forget what it was.

*Note: You can use the previously ground kind as well.

Adapted from Andy Husbands’ and Joe Yonan’s The Fearless Chef

Za’tar Spiced Pita

1 tablespoon za’tar
Note: This is available at most Middle Eastern or Persian food stores. Go to Zand’s on Solano in Albany, CA if you are in the Bay Area.
1 tablespoon olive oil
OR all of the spices listed below plus the oil
1 tablespoon sumac or lemon zest
1 tablespoon white sesame seeds
2 teaspoons cumin seeds, toasted and ground
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried marjoram or oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil

4 rounds of pita bread

1. Turn oven on broil with a rack set 4 to 6 inches from the top element.
2. Combine the purchased za’tar with the olive oil.
Make your own za’tar: in a small bowl, combine the sesame seeds, sumac, cumin, thyme, marjoram or oregano, and salt.
3. Measure out 1 tablespoon. Add the olive oil and blend well. Place the remaining za’tar in a glass spice jar and mark the contents for the next time.
4. Cut each round into 6-8 pieces. Arrange the pitas on a baking sheet and spread the za’tar and oil mixture evenly over each. You may not need all of your homemade za’tar mixture.
5. Broil until deep golden brown, 2 to 4 minutes, watching carefully and rotating the pan half way through to brown evenly. It can turn from toasted to burnt in an instant.
6. Serve with the hummus.

Adapted from Andy Husbands' and Joe Yonan’s The Fearless Chef

No comments:

Post a Comment