Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Middle-Eastern Hummus Plate

I absolutely love Middle-Eastern food, especially hummus! I first tried this plate while living several years ago in Florida at a Mid-Eastern cafe, and found it quite easy to replicate at home. Although I suppose you could use store-bought hummus for convenience, I prefer to make my own, as it is easy and more nutritous (no preservatives, soaked chickpeas, etc...)

Here's the basic set-up for the plate:


Whole Kalmatta Olives

Chopped Tomatoes

Sliced Red Onion

Sliced Cucumber, previously marinated in olive oil and a bit of apple-cider vinegar

Fresh Pita Bread or Naan

Tabbouli Salad

Here are the recipes for homemade hummus and tabbouli salad:


2 cups chickpeas, soaked overnight, simmered until tender

1 tbsp. garlic

1 tsp. garam masala (Indian-style spice you can find in most large supermarkets)

4 tbsp. lemon juice

2 tbsp. olive oil

2 tbsp. tahinni (sesame paste)

chopped cilantro, salt and pepper to taste

Soaking Step--in a large bowl, cover the beans with about 4 cups water and 1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar or lemon juice. Soak overnight, draining water and rinsing well in the morning. Simmer beans until tender, about 2 hours.

Puree all ingreedients until smooth in a food processor. Chill 2 hours prior to serving.

Taboulli Salad

2 c. cooked whole-wheat couscous, chilled

4 tbsp. olive oil

4 tbsp. lemon juice

diced red onion, as much as you like

1 tbsp. chopped fresh mint

1 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley

salt and pepper to taste

Toss all ingredients to combine; Serve chilled

To assemble the plate: Place a good-sized scoop of hummus on the plate; garnish with tomatoes, olives, onion, cucumber and taboulli salad. Serve with pita or naan

For a tutorial on making your own tahini paste, go to this link: (It's easy, and a lot more frugal than store-bought!)


  1. Yum! I love hummus! Fresh is always best and so good for you. Thanks for posting this, it is similar to my own but I'm going to try adding the sesame paste to it next time.

  2. I have to make a great batch of hummus for my family because the children just won't stop eating it! Reading your post has made me want to make some right now!