Saturday, November 15, 2008

Lentil Hummus

Among our tiny social circle and beyond, it is universally recognized that no one makes hummus as well or as tasty as does Waldie. I recently got her to pass along her recipe, and immediately saw why. The rest of us poor saps start with chickpeas (ceci, garbanzo beans). Waldie starts with lentils. That’s where the extra flavor comes from!

So here’s her recipe:

1. Bring:
  • 2 qts of water and
  • 2 Tablespoons of kosher salt
to a boil.

2. Add
  • 1/2 lb. of lentils (~ 1 1/4 cups)
and simmer about 15 minutes (until the lentils are al dente).

3. Drain & rinse the lentils in cold water. Drain them well and chill for 20 minutes.

4. Make a garlic paste by mincing & mashing 5 cloves of garlic with 1/4 tsp. kosher salt.

5. Purée lentils in a food processor.

6. Add
  • 1/2 c. tahini,
  • garlic paste (see above),
  • 1/2 c. fresh lemon juice, and
  • 1/2 c. water
7. Add 1/2 c. olive oil in a stream.

8. If the mixture is too thick, add up to 1/4 c. more water.

9. Season with salt & pepper.

10. Serve at room temperature.

In my experience, this stuff is best if made the day before you want to eat it, and the texture is best if it’s not too smooth. But that could just be me. Also, the denizens of The House of Chez Casa will be using more garlic.


Heidi Mehltretter said...

THIS is exciting. I can't wait to try it. Thanks!

St. Izzy said...

So something weird happened when I went to make a batch of this today. I followed the recipe as before, and the hummus came out as runny as soup. Cooked some more lentils and added them, still too runny. Repeated. There was then a full 1 lb. bag of lentils in the mix. And it was still too runny.

So we cooked another pound of lentils. Four times the recipe's worth. I mashed up some more garlic, added a bunch more salt, squeezed the only lemon left in the house, and scraped the tahini clean. I added no more olive oil, nor water.

But at four times the usual amount of lentils, the texture was finally almost right.

What the heck?

1) Next time out, there will be a change in procedure. No water or oil added until everything else has been blended together (although this would not have been enough to keep it from being too runny today, so it's just a start).

2) Anyone want some lentil hummus? I think we have a gallon of the stuff in the fridge, and we have in this household two portion-controlled diabetics. Come get a pint. Or a quart. Or a half-gallon.


Stephanie said...

Um, thanks, but I already got mine. :)

St. Izzy said...

Yours might need more lemon. I'm just saying.

Waldie said...

strange. that's the way i do it and i've never had that problem. as far as i know, i don't think my stepdad has either and he's the one who gave me the recipe. maybe house of che casa is at such a higher altitude than ours that it melts the lentils. at least it's a very forgiving recipe and can take a lot of tweaking.

St. Izzy said...

Well, OK then. I'll adjust the procedure and leave the bulk of the liquid until the lentils, tahini, & garlic have been blended together.

St. Izzy said...