Standard Middle Eastern Hummus Recipe

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I absolutely love HUMMUS!  I can eat it straight out of the container with a spoon - no bread or veggies required!  It's such a good source of protein and fiber.  I just feel better after I've had some.  I enjoy eating with things like naan, whole wheat crackers, and just about any kind of vegetable.  

Another great benefit is my kids love it!  If I'm ever in a pickle to get some protein and fiber into my kids' tummies, I have no problem spoon feeding them a healthy bean dip!  Not only that, I'm introducing them to new flavors: Chickpeas, tahini, lemon, garlic, and sumac.

Hummus is such a great alternative to other dips you might find at social gatherings, things like cheese dip, ranch dip, not-so-healthy bean dips, and so many other processed foods that contain tons of crazy ingredients, unhealthy fats and lots of sodium!

You can do just about anything with the base ingredients of hummus and get really creative.  In fact, you'll find a number of other recipes, including Omega-3 Middle Eastern Hummus, Sweet Potato Hummus, Peanut Butter Hummus, Spinach, & Mediterranean Hummus.

I am also always looking for healthier and cheaper versions of doing things.  So, I buy dried Chickpeas (also called Garbanzo beans) and cook them at home.  You can make three times as much for the same price of one can of chickpeas, but buying the canned versions is fairly inexpensive as well.

Standard Middle Eastern Hummus

2 cups cooked Chickpeas with skins removed

1/4-1/2 cup Greek yogurt

4 Tbsp lemon or lime juice

1  1/2 Tb tahini, sesame seed paste

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1/2 tsp salt (optional)

Extra-virgin olive oil to swirl on top

Paprika or Sumac, to sprinkle on top

Pine nuts, to garnish

Blend all the ingredients in a food processor or high-powered blender until creamy.  Start with 1/4 cup of yogurt and add extra until it reaches your desired consistency (I like more!).  Once the hummus is plated, add the olive oil, paprika or sumac, and sprinkle with pine nuts.

* This recipe is inspired by one of my favorite Mediterranean food blogs, The Mediterranean Dish.  However, she uses less yogurt than I like and I also like to switch off between lemon and lime juice; however, she was who taught me how to make the most incredibly silky hummus ever!