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PHOTO BY CHELSEA KYLE, FOOD STYLING BY ANNA STOCKWELL

Chickpeas are among the best legumes, and this is among the best recipes you can prepare with them, an eons-old Middle Eastern classic. Generally, I’m not a big fan of canned beans, but for whatever reason canned chickpeas are not bad at all, and I always keep some on hand so I can make a batch of this at the last minute, to use as a dip or a spread. You can make hummus without tahini; it will be a little looser and less complex tasting but still good.

YIELD
Makes 8 or more servings

INGREDIENTS

    • 2 cups drained well-cooked or canned chickpeas, liquid reserved
    • 1/2 cup tahini (sesame paste), optional, with some of its oil
    • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus oil for drizzling
    • 2 cloves garlic, peeled, or to taste
    • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
    • 1 tablespoon ground cumin or paprika, or to taste, plus a sprinkling for garnish
    • Juice of 1 lemon, plus more as needed
    • Chopped fresh parsley leaves for garnish

PREPARATION

    1.  Put everything except the parsley in a food processor and begin to process; add the chickpea liquid or water as needed to allow the machine to produce a smooth puree.
    2.  Taste and adjust the seasoning (I often find I like to add much more lemon juice). Serve, drizzled with the olive oil and sprinkled with a bit more cumin or paprika and some parsley.