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Kick off Ramadan season with this delicious Lebanese hummus recipe courtesy of Tamara, the perfect mezze dish for any iftar spread.

Ingredients

1 cup dried chickpeas
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 clove garlic
3/4 cup tahini
3 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/2-3/4 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup finely diced onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon coriander
1/8 teaspoon cardamom
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of nutmeg
Pinch of all spice
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 lb ground chuck (beef)
1/4 cup pine nuts

Olive oil
Tahini
Paprika
Roasted sesame seeds
Black sesame seeds
Grilled pita or warm laffa

Method

Place the dried chickpeas in a large glass or plastic bowl and cover with at least 6 cups of cool water. Leave for at least 12 hours or overnight. Drain and change the water out at least once, no earlier than 2 hours after the soak starts.

Place the soaked chickpeas in a large stockpot and cover with 8 to 10 cups of water. Add the baking soda and bring to a boil over high heat. Once it boils, it will begin to foam. You want to skim away all that foam. Boil for 2 minutes while skimming. Turn the heat down to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for 35 to 45 minutes.

Once cooled, drain the chickpeas well, saving at least a half-cup of cooking liquid. Place the chickpeas in a food processor. Process until a thick paste forms, about a minute or two. Add the garlic clove and process again until smooth. Add the tahini, lemon juice, cumin and salt, and process again on high. If the hummus is too thick, slowly stream in a little of the chickpea cooking liquid to loosen it up. Taste for seasoning and adjust with salt and lemon juice.

For the beef, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions when hot and sauté for 4 to 5 minutes until softened and translucent. Add the garlic, paprika, cumin, coriander, cardamom, cinnamon, nutmeg, all spice, salt and pepper. Sauté for about a minute to release the oils and aromas from the spices. Add the beef and break it up as it browns. Cook for 8 to 10 minutes until the beef is cooked through and browned nicely. Mix in the pine nuts and cook for another minute. Taste and adjust seasoning.

Plate the hummus on 2 serving dishes and create a well in the middle. Place some of the beef right in the middle of the well. Garnish with olive oil, tahini paste, paprika, roasted sesame seeds and black sesame seeds. Serve immediately with pita or laffa. Enjoy!

 

 

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