The quest for the smoothest, creamiest and fluffiest hummus is no stranger to the internet. Methods for achieving this ideal are all over the map, some swearing by certain brands of canned chickpeas, others insisting on starting from dried chickpeas, or maintaining you must soak them, boil and even peel them.
Yup, chickpeas have a skin. You may never have noticed because it’s so ridiculously thin and translucent. I certainly never noticed it until I began my own quest for the smoothest, creamiest hummus. But after spending a full hour peeling the stubborn skins off a double batch of chickpeas...and not finding any obviously improved texture as a result of my tedious labor, I decided that couldn’t be the way.
I gave up. Until...
One night a few years ago we were over for dinner at a married couple’s house. Kabobs were on the menu, served with a heaping bowl of the most divinely creamy hummus I’d ever had. I begged for the secret! The husband had spent time in the Middle East and, we learned, their secret? A blender.
Up until this time, I made my hummus in the food processor, assuming it would do a better job pulverizing the chickpeas into creaminess. Once I switched to a blender, I never went back. Although it can be a pain to scoop out from, the blender produces the creamiest, fluffiest and smoothest hummus your heart could desire, with no added labor or jumping through hoops. Simply throw ingredients in, and blend.
Roasted Sweet Potato and Almond Hummus
1 medium-sized (about 12 oz) sweet potato, peeled and cubed into 1/2-inch pieces
1/4 cup (1.5 oz) almonds, plus a couple tablespoons more for garnish
1 (15 oz) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 garlic clove
1-2 tablespoons lime juice
1 teaspoon cumin
Salt and pepper
Water (see note)
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Toss cubed sweet potato with a drizzle of olive oil and a generous sprinkling of salt and pepper. Spread evenly on a lined baking sheet and roast at 450 degrees until soft and just beginning to charr, about 15-20 minutes, stirring once halfway through. When there’s about 5-10 minutes remaining on the roasting time, open the oven and toss the 1/4 cup of almonds onto the baking sheet so they have a chance to roast for a few minutes (this builds a deeper and nuttier flavor). Set aside.
In a blender, add roasted sweet potatoes, almonds, chickpeas, garlic clove, lime juice, 2 tablespoons olive oil, cumin, and 1 teaspoon salt. Start at low speed and begin to blend. Stop, scrape down the sides, add about 1/4 cup water, and increase to medium high until you have an ultra smooth creamy spread. Add more water as needed. Taste and adjust seasonings (lime, cumin, and salt) to your preference.
Spoon hummus into a serving bowl, spread evenly and swirl with a spoon. Garnish with a drizzle of olive oil and chopped almonds. Enjoy!
Notes & substitutions
Sweet potato: you can swap out the roasted cubed sweet potato for 1/2 cup mashed sweet potato, but the flavor will not be as rich and intense.
Almonds: you can swap out the almonds for 2 tablespoons of almond butter.
Water: I am always after the super smooth hummus you can find in the grocery store. And I want my hummus to stay smooth when I put it in the fridge. I have found that using more liquid fats (tahini, olive oil, melted butter) can help produce super smooth hummus, but once it chills in the fridge, the hummus solidifies and is no longer easy to scoop. Using more water solves that problem.
Adapted from Real Simple March 2018.