Houmous might seem like such a basic recipe to bless with a space on a recipe blog, but I need to share this.
Back in my old calorie-restricting days, I was always looking up oil free recipes – any way to get the fat right down and the calories condensed. I no longer worry so much about this, but if you eat houmous on a regular basis and it’s a concern of yours, then this is a great recipe to have in your repertoire. It’s zero waste too!
Aquafaba is a word being tossed around on TV and the internet constantly these days. It’s a magical ingredient. If you don’t know what it is, it’s basically the liquid that you are left with after draining a tin of chickpeas (or any other beans, even dark ones).
It is water that has leeched protein during the chickpea cooking process, so it resembles egg whites, and it acts just like it. It can be used to make light, fluffy, stiff peaks for meringues or other baked goods, like cornbread and biscuits.
Aquafaba does have an odd smell to it (just like ordinary eggs do) but don’t worry – the taste of your houmous will not be affected. It’ll still taste creamy and dreamy.
Even though this is an oil-free houmous, it’s not fat-free because of the tahini. Don’t omit this though. Tahini is what gives the houmous its mouthwatering, signature nutty flavour. This recipe is very low in saturated fat but has healthy fats and a good amount of protein to keep you sated.
Not all tahini is created equal. A good quality tahini should be runny. Tahini isn’t easy to come by in ordinary supermarkets I’ve found, with the only ones on offer being very thick and stodgy. I get mine from local ethnic food stores where you have access to deliciously runny tahini.
Buying houmous from the supermarket is convenient but for the sake of a few minutes, I think it’s totally worth making your own. It’s far fresher and you can control the flavours, customising it as you see fit. No chopping or grating needed, just chuck everything in a blender and let it rip!
Look how smooth the houmous in the photo below is. Can you believe it has no oil in it? I like to make a batch of this at the weekend and have it with veggie sticks or crackers for a mid-morning snack at work. It’s a great thing to have on hand for baked potatoes or for thinning down with some more lemon juice into a salad dressing… it’s such a versatile base!
This houmous can be frozen too. Save yourself even more time by making 3 or even 4 batches in one go, distribute into containers and chuck it in your freezer to enjoy at a later date. Yum!
- 1 x 400g tin of chickpeas, drained with liquid reserved
- 1 tbsp tahini
- 2-3 tbsp lemon juice
- 2-3 garlic cloves
- ½ tbsp ground cumin
- 2 tsp paprika
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp pepper
- 4 tbsp chickpea liquid (aquafaba)
- Drain your chickpeas over a bowl and reserve the liquid. Rinse the chickpeas but don't worry about drying them off.
- In a food processor, add the chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice, garlic cloves, cumin and paprika. Blend. It will be quite sticky and chunky.
- tbsp at a time, add the reserved chickpea liquid (aquafaba) until the mixture is to your desired thickness. You might need more than than 4 tbsp - just judge it as you go!
- Decant the houmous into an airtight container. Keeps for around 7 days in the fridge or in the freezer for 1 month.