Contributed by Alon Shaya
Alon Shaya’s Classic Hummus Ful
- In a large bowl, combine 1 ½ quarts water and ½ teaspoon baking soda; add the garbanzo beans and soak overnight.
- Heat the oven to 400°F. Drain the garbanzo beans and toss with 2 teaspoons baking soda, then spread in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet and roast until the beans have visibly dried, 10 minutes or so.
- Move the garbanzo beans to a large sieve or colander; with cold water running over the garbanzo beans, start roughing them up with your hands to loosen the skins. You can grab a small handful and briskly run them between your palms or pinch them between your fingers (don’t worry about removing and discarding the skins yet). The more you do now, the more will come off during cooking, so take some time here. It’s good to be thorough—this is like giving them a deep tissue massage to loosen everything up.
- Once again, combine 1 ½ quarts water with ½ teaspoon baking soda in your pot. Add the garbanzo beans and bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to medium. With a small sieve or slotted spoon, skim away the foam and loose skins from the top of the water and discard. It may be helpful for you to reserve the discarded skins in a bowl to track your progress; with enough persistence, you’re aiming to have about ¾ cup of skins alone.
- Every couple of minutes during the cooking process, strain away the skins by plunging your sieve deep into the pot and giving a good stir, then using the sieve to catch the swirling skins like you would fish for minnows. It’s okay to beat them up a little against the side of the pot to speed this along. Repeat this process as much as you have the patience to do until the garbanzo beans are just becoming tender, 20 to 25 minutes.
- When the garbanzo beans are still sort of “al dente,” give them one last skim to trap any skins, then add the garlic. Cook for another 25 to 30 minutes, until the beans are super-creamy. Drain and let sit in strainer for a few minutes so any extra moisture can evaporate.
- Combine the garbanzo beans in a food processor with the tahini, lemon juice, salt, and cumin. Process for several minutes, until the mixture is incredibly smooth. With the machine still going, stream in the canola oil, hot water, and 2 tablespoons olive oil. Let it rip—there’s no way to over-process this stuff and you want it to be light as air.
- Serve the hummus completely at room temperature. I like to spread it in a wide, shallow bowl, where I can smear it up the sides and show off the filling.Use the back of your spoon to make a well in the center, and fill it with prepared tahini and ful, if you’re using them. Drizzle the last 3 tablespoons olive oil and scatter the parsley and Aleppo on top.
- In a large mixing bowl, cover the fava beans with water making sure there is 6 inches of water over the beans. Let sit overnight on the counter at room temperature to soak.
- Drain the beans of the excess water. In a large sauce pot or dutch oven over medium heat, add the olive oil, onions, garlic and serrano chilies. Sauteé until translucent and soft.
- Add the soaked beans and cover with water.
- Bring to a boil then turn down to a low simmer. Let the beans cook slowly until soft and creamy. It will take about 3 hours. Keep adding water 1 cup at a time if they have soaked all the water up.
- Once tender and creamy, add the cilantro, parsley, cumin, coriander, paprika and salt. Season to taste with more salt if you prefer.
- Fold in butter and spoon the ful over the hummus.
- In a separate pot, bring 1 quart of water to a simmer and place the 4 eggs in the pot.
- Cook for 7-8 minutes then drain and peel.
- Cut the eggs in half.
- Garnish with more chopped herbs, olive oil and soft cooked egg.
- Combine the lemon juice and garlic in a non-reactive bowl; set it aside for 30 minutes to steep.
- Meanwhile, whip the tahini with a stand mixer or electric mixer on high speed for about 10 minutes, until it’s glossy and light like cake batter. It’s nearly impossible to over-whip it, so feel free to spend a little time here.
- Strain the lemon juice. Decrease the mixer’s speed to medium and add the juice and salt; the tahini will seize up at first, but don’t freak out! Keep whipping it at medium speed and it will incorporate.
- When the tahini has a uniformly tacky, almost fudgy consistency, add the ice water, about ¼ cup at a time, and increase the speed to high. At first, the sauce may seize up again and look almost curdled, but keep adding the ice water, whipping well between each addition. It will smooth itself out and should look like a thick mousse. Every tahini is different; if, after you’ve added all the water, it’s still too thick, keep adding it by the tablespoon until it lightens up.
- Prepared tahini will stay good for about 2 days in the fridge. If you’re making it in advance, let it warm up just slightly on the counter and whip in 1 to 2 tablespoons ice water to restore some of its lightness. Add to the well in the hummus.
Alon Shaya is an Israeli-born chef who currently owns two restaurants: Saba in New Orleans and Safta in Denver. His culinary journey and resounding love of Israeli and Italian cuisine is reflected in his cookbook, “Shaya: An Odyssey of Food, My Journey Back to Israel.”