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Hummus - Manna from Heaven

From the Kitchen of: Zoe Alowan

Something about well made hummus I find utterly divine. I find this recipe especially appealing because it delivers the hummus "zing" without the garlic aftershocks. I mean, do angels dream of sweet breathing humans? My eighteen year old son doesn't agree. "This stuff would be great, Mom, if you would only put in a bunch of garlic." Now he's at college and he chops his own garlic. But for me I like it garlic free…manna from heaven.

Makes 60 servings-

stores in the refrigerator up to one week, better if it sits overnight to marry the flavors

    30 c cooked garbanzo beans
    6 c white sesame seeds, lightly toasted
    6 c olive oil (preferably, organic, virgin cold pressed)
    1 c Grape Seed Oil Vegenaise (optional)
    5 c lemon juice
    1 T cumin
    ¼ c salt
    1 t red pepper


  1. When working with such large quantities as 30 cups of cooked garbanzo beans it is vital to have a good food processor, blender, or juicer to work with. Assemble all your ingredients.
  2. Begin by processing the garbanzo beans through a food machine to make a paste. A Champion Juicer really simplifies the procedure, pureeing rapidly with the blank screen in place; even a hand cranked food mill works well.
  3. Toast the sesame seeds in two dry frying pans, stirring until they just begin to turn a light brown. Watch carefully; using scorched sesame seeds will ruin your dish. Using the food processor or blender, combine the toasted seeds with the olive oil and blend until a smooth paste is formed.
  4. Add the garbanzo puree,lemon juice, and vegenaise, to the sesame paste, mixing until smooth. Note: at least one half of the lemon juice should be fresh squeezed or fresh frozen.
  5. Stir the cumin and red pepper into the salt before adding to the mixture, to be sure the flavors are distributed. Sprinkle the seasoned salt across the hummus and complete the final blending.
  6. Taste and correct for lemon and salt.
  7. Store covered and refrigerated for at least 12 hours and up to one week.

    Serve the delicious hummus with warmed sliced bread or pita bread. Traditional serving is to spread the hummus over a platter, placing indentations across the surface with the back of a spoon. Then drizzle an extra amount of olive oil into an indentation on top of the hummus and sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley or sweet paprika as a garnish.

    This recipe was inspired by a traditional recipe for four in "Sacramento Magic in a Small Town Café" by Br. Peter Reinhart.

    Ellen says: the combination of beans and sesame makes a complete protein which makes this a nourishing entree. A 15 oz can garbanzo beans, drained (reserve liquid) is 1 3/4 cup cooked garbanzo beans. A pound of beans produces about 7 cups of cooked. So you would get almost 4 cans from the pound of uncooked beans. If you can get ground sumac. it is even better than the paprika as a topping.