- Apparently where the chickpeas are grown may make a difference (see here and here). Dry chickpeas which are small and evenly colored are better then large chickpeas or old chickpeas. Large Mexican garbanzos are often undesirable.
- Adding baking soda to the soaking water (about 1 tsp) and to the cooking water (1/4 tsp to 1/2 tsp) may help the chickpeas to absorb more water, and therefore soften more easily. But you want to be careful to not add too much baking soda, because it can give the chickpeas a soapy taste. Also if you add baking soda you may not want to use the cooking water in the hummus, because the baking soda can be hard on the stomach. So baking soda is optional, but if you have difficultly softening your dried chickpeas or want them to cooking faster (it isn't unusual for chickpeas to take 2 hours to cook), then you may want to try baking soda.
- All (or nearly all) bean cooking recipes recommend soaking and cooking with un-salted water, and adding salt to the beans in the last 10-15 minutes of cooking so that the beans can absorb some salt. However none of the chickpea cooking recipes seem to suggest this final addition of salt. So it might not be necessary, or might not be desirable.
- Cool the chickpeas after cooking them. Grinding the chickpeas when they are warm can make the dip pasty since the starch crystals in the chickpeas break down more easily when they are warm. Most recipes seem to indicate cooling to room temperature, though I did see one recipe which suggested refrigerating them for 2 hours before grinding.
- Some recipes suggest not mixing any oil (including olive oil) into the dip. Instead they suggest that authentically middle eastern hummus only has olive oil drizzled on top. (e.g. here).
- Many recipes seem to suggest that cumin is an essential spice in hummus, and that sprinkling cumin on top of the hummus is more traditional then paprika.
Thursday, July 19, 2012
Recently, I found out a few more tips about hummus (some previously mentioned hummus tips on this blog are here). I haven't tried these yet, but I'm listing them here so that I can remember what these tips are the next time I make hummus.