I have been wanting to make hummus for a while but somehow never get round to it, even though I have all the ingredients.

Yesterday I woke up quite late and had a boiled egg with bread for lunch, then was invited out in the evening to a barbecue at a friend’s, to which I took a bottle of wine. I also did quite a large shop yesterday: 24,74€ for many things including coffee, apples, eggs, pasta, chocolate, milk, butter, and pittas in the organic shop, and about 4€ in Lidl on a bottle of organic rosé and some sesame biscuits. Today I bought some blue cheese (Bleu des Causses), coriander, and muesli in U (6,05€) and a baguette and a pain aux raisins at the boulangerie (2€).

There has been a jar of tahini in the cupboard for a while now, as well as the jar of chickpeas I bought with the best intentions yet somehow never got round to soaking. In the end it was the irresistible special offer of a stainless steel passe légumes (with three discs) for 11€ — to replace the ageing one that came with the house, is a little bit rusty and has never really been particularly good — that got my act together.

Guidance came from my friend Yvonne, whose hummus this is.

  • 100g dried chick peas
  • one clove garlic, crushed with a knife
  • one heaped teaspoon tahini
  • the juice of half a lemon
  • salt/pepper
  • cumin
  • olive oil
  • paprika
  • chopped parsley

Soak the chickpeas overnight, or for as long as you can put off making hummus, then drain them and rinse them. Boil them gently in unsalted water for one hour, or until done, then drain them. Keep the water.

Take each chickpea and remove the skin. I learned that squeezing them gently from one end was quite effective and also sometimes splits them, but while this is very therapeutic but is also a bit of a faff, which is why you don’t need to do make more than 100g of hummus at a time.

Crush a large clove of garlic with the handle of a knife. Remove the skin, cut up any big bits, add a little salt, then crush/purée with the side of the blade.

Place the passe légumes over the saucepan, add the chickpeas and start turning. Use a little of the water if necessary. I used the smallest-holed disc which had the effect of squeezing the water out of the chickpeas and reducing them to a nice paste, but they were reluctant to go through the holes.

Disassemble the passe légumes and get all the puréed chickpeas off the various surfaces and into the saucepan. Add the garlic and season with salt and pepper. Remove the pips from the half lemon then squeeze the juice into the saucepan, using a teaspoon if necessary.

If the tahini has separated, take the teaspoonful from the jar through the oil, so you can save the sesame oil to go in something else. Add the tahini to the saucepan, then stir thoroughly, adding olive oil until you get the texture you want. Stir in some ground cumin to taste, serve into a nice bowl then garnish with some parsley and paprika.

As this is My First Hummus, the above needs refining. It was a little watery for my liking, which I tried to rectify with more tahini, so I’ll use more oil and no water if possible next time. I could salt the chickpeas towards the end of cooking too.