I’m obsessed with Israeli hummus, specifically Abu Hassan’s hummus, which I discovered during my trip to Israel. The best & smoothest hummus I have ever had was in Jaffa and I learned how to replicate it at home with a special ingredient: baking soda.
Abu Hassan Hummus
During my beautiful trip to Israel in 2019, I learned new things every day. What always gets my attention while travelling is the traditional ways that my favourite foods are made. I promise you, this is a labour of love and makes the most beautifully soft, velvety, creamy hummus, the way I had it with every meal in Jaffa, which is the ancient town in Tel Aviv, Israel.
I based my recipe on the way I learned about hummus at Abu Hassan’s in Jaffa. Abu Hassan serves hummus, a bit different by offering it with or without ful (a popular fava bean dish), massabha (very similar ingredients to hummus, completely different in texture), or a combination of all three which is called meshuleshet.
Abu Hassan always has people lined up out front, but don’t let that discourage you from visiting. After you order, it takes literal seconds for the food to arrive. They serve this and only this, which is where the efficiency comes from. There is no coffee, no extras, and no dessert.
Louis and I would come here for lunch, and get one for takeout. Then we would walk our hummus and a huge bag of pita to the pier and enjoy our lunch by the water. We literally sat on the ground, as tourists walked passed us. It is a memory I will always cherish.
If you can make it to Abu Hassan’s in your lifetime, go! If you don’t have plans to get over to Israel (yet) then making this at home is the second-best way to indulge on the best that chickpeas have to offer.
Related Recipe: Vegan Challah Bread
DAIRY-FREE | VEGAN | GLUTEN-FREE
Abu Hassan claims there is no secret to his hummus, but it definitely tastes very different than any other hummus I have ever tried. So, I tried to come up with what I think is a very close contender with baking soda as my secret ingredient!
ISRAEL HUMMUS INGREDIENTS
This recipe has the following ingredients:
- dried chickpeas
- baking soda
- sea salt
- bay leaf
- lemon juice
- reserved chickpea cooking liquid
- extra virgin olive oil, parsley, and chopped kalamata olives, for garnish
Related Recipe: Israeli Tahini Toast
Tips on making Israeli-Style Hummus:
- Make-Ahead: Soak dry chickpeas overnight by placing dried chickpeas, 1 tbsp sea salt, 1 tsp baking soda, and 4 cups of water in a large container. Stir to help salt and baking soda dissolve and allow the chickpeas to soak in the fridge overnight.
- Use dry chickpeas and soak them with baking soda. Soaking the chickpeas with baking soda, and cooking them with baking soda, will make the environment more basic, making the chickpeas more water-soluble. When they become more water-soluble, they soak up more water, cut down on cook time, and becomes a creamy hummus when blended. They literally melt in your mouth whole.
- No pressure cooker? Just boil the chickpeas for about 30-40 mins and check to see if they’re ready by taking one out and squishing it between your fingers. Alternatively, you could cover with water in a dutch oven or le cruset and bake with the lid on for 30-40 mins at about 350 in the oven.
- Blending the garlic with the lemon juice and allowing it to sit. This will mellow the astringent, pungent flavour of raw garlic.
- Blending the tahini with lemon juice (and garlic) and a bit of the cooking liquid in the food processor, before adding the remaining ingredients will turn the tahini into a creamy, rich sauce, and will make incorporating it with the chickpeas a lot easier.
Israeli-style Hummus Recipe
- Soak chickpeas overnight by placing dried chickpeas, 1 tbsp sea salt, 1 tsp baking soda, and 4 cups of water in a large container.
- Stir to help salt and baking soda dissolve and allow the chickpeas to soak in the fridge overnight.
- Rinse soaked chickpeas with cold water and be sure to remove any stones, stick or other harvesting debris. Place them into a pressure cooker.
- Add 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp baking soda, 1 bay leaf, 1 garlic clove, and ½ onion to the pressure cooker and cover completely with water, covering 2 inches above the chickpeas.
- Set the pressure cooker to high and 10 minutes. After it beeps allow it to release naturally for 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, puree 4 garlic cloves, lemon juice and salt in a food processor. Scrape down the sides, to ensure all the garlic is sitting in the lemon juice and allow it to soak while the chickpeas are cooking.
- When chickpeas are done cooking, remove the onion and bay leaves.
- Drain the chickpeas but reserve the liquid. Set aside the chickpeas and chickpea liquid.
- To the food processor, add the tahini and start to blend. Add the reserved chickpea water, one tablespoon at time until the tahini is smooth.
- Add the chickpeas and 1 cooked clove garlic, cumin and to the food processor.
- Blend adding 1 tbsp of chickpea liquid at a time until desired smoothness is reached. This could take 5-8 mins of blending. The hummus should be very smooth, and light. Taste, and adjust salt accordingly.
- Scoop the hummus into a serving bowl and top with a drizzle of olive oil, chopped fresh parsley, ful (optional), Meshabha (optional) and served with sliced onion and pita.
LOOKING FOR MORE VEGAN ISRAELI RECIPES?
If you guys try my Abu Hassan Israel Hummus recipe, let me know what you think by leaving a star rating & comment below. It truly helps me & I really appreciate any support! Feel free to share your food creation on social and tag me @edgyveg on your photo so I don’t miss it!