Since moving to the Middle East my husband has become a hummus FIEND. This transformation has surprised no one more than me, especially considering that he originally thought hummus was made from potatoes! After 3 years, he now cannot get enough of the stuff and considers himself to be something of a hummus expert and, in his ‘expert’ opinion, the creamiest and smoothest ones get the top marks.
As you might have noticed from previous posts, my mum is a very good cook and she often makes delicious hummus… however, although Mark enjoys the taste he often comments that it is quite grainy and not as smooth as shop bought. (Does he not know the first rule of being a son in law is to always be complimentary?!) So this year, when Mum announced that she had found a new recipe which claimed to make the best, creamiest hummus we were all ears. This recipe, which you can find here, says that the secret is to heat the chickpeas and garlic together before blending them with the other ingredients.
So, feeling confident, I challenged my husband to a blind taste test. If I made a batch of this hummus and also bought some, would he be able to tell the difference? He accepted so… CHALLENGE ON!
However, I would like it to be known that when I made this bold challenge 1) I had never made my own hummus before and 2) I didn’t think that the actual making of the hummus would be that difficult, or time consuming. Well, more fool me.
Mainly because… COULD I FIND TAHINI ANYWHERE?! Nope, nope and nope. I visited multiple large shopping brands with no luck what so ever. In one particular store, when my friend asked if they had any tahini paste and explained that it was, as the name suggested, a paste but made from sesame seeds, the person led us to a display of tagine dishes… Oh dear. So the hummus challenge was now 2 parts – first, making my own tahini and secondly, using it to make my own hummus! Not surprisingly, Mark was looking pretty smug as the likelihood of me winning seemed to be getting smaller and smaller. I dutifully searched pinterest for a tahini recipe, followed it step by step and… it was horrible. It was bitter and strong and in the end my hummus tasted more like peanut butter!
So I lost the challenge. (sad face…)
Then… a friend text Mark, with the top secret tahini location (Holland and Barrett… WHY did I not think of trying there?) and the challenge sequel was on again!
Tahini bought and things were looking more positive! From further extensive research into creating the creamiest hummus I had also picked up 2 extra tips – firstly to de-skin the chickpeas before starting and secondly, to blend the tahini with the lemon juice and salt first allowing it to loosen up and become creamier before adding in the warm chickpeas and garlic. You can find my slightly adapted homemade hummus recipe in the recipes section!
The final homemade product looked like this…
The shop bought product looked like this…
Mark was blindfolded and given a spoonful of each to try. The verdict was that, in terms of smoothness and creaminess, they were much the same and he could not identify a difference between them. In terms of taste… He preferred the homemade one! YAAAS! (He actually tried to defend why he thought the shop bought one was mine by saying that it was very lemony and he thought that I might have accidentally gone overboard with it!) All in all, although it was initially a bit of a hassle, the homemade hummus tasted delicious and will definitely be getting made again!
Can you tell the difference?