I love hummus. I have several packages of it in my refrigerator at all times. I like the creaminess of Sabra’s Roasted Red Pepper, the authenic taste of Tribe’s Original and have started enjoying some of the boutiquey brands like Haig’s and Sonny and Joe’s.
Hummus is a traditional Middle Eastern food. Israelis claim it as their creation but experts agree that the chickpea-based dip is rooted in Arab cuisine. While Israel held the world record for the largest hummus dip, chefs outside of Beirut, Lebanon just whipped up a 60,000 pound plate of hummus this week to claim the Guinness World Record title of biggest plate of hummus.
Size aside, good hummus should be made based on this traditional recipe which calls for chickpeas, lemon juice, tahini (sesame seed paste), lemon, garlic, salt and olive oil (not essential). While there are thousands of variations of the pita-bread dip, those are the core ingredients. Hummus looks and tastes very different based on the recipe you use, and most authentic Middle Eastern versions have little resemblance to what you buy in US stores.
Hummus is easy to make but I rarely take the time, as there are many store-brands that already make it great and it’s all healthy. Nutritionally, a tablespoon of hummus is 35 calories and has 3 grams fat (almost all unsaturated), 1 gram each, fiber and protein. If you compare that to a sour cream-based dip, which is loaded with saturated fat, you can see how much better hummus is for your health. To make it even better, enjoy hummus with cut up raw veggies and baked whole wheat pita bread.