This recipe came about as I absentmindedly wondered aloud what I was going to make with some chickpeas that had been languishing in my freezer for longer than I cared to admit. My husband replied “hummus” right as I offered “spiced roasted chickpeas,” and then I wondered why on EARTH I hadn’t put the two together yet.
The resulting hummus, richly spiced with cumin, cinnamon, and Aleppo pepper, is good eaten with crudités or wedges of pita, but it sings when spread in a pita or on flatbread and topped with leftover roasted lamb or chicken. Please please PLEASE try this with freshly ground spices- it make a world of a difference.
3 cups cooked chickpeas, liquid reserved
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon Aleppo pepper
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated Vietnamese cinnamon
1 fat clove garlic, cut into small chunks
1/2 cup tahini paste
1 lemon, cut in half
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Use a kitchen towel or a paper towel to gently pat the chickpeas dry, then spread them onto a large baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and toss, then sprinkle with a few healthy pinches of kosher salt and the spices. Place in the oven for about 12 minutes , stirring them after about 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool for about ten minutes.*
2. Place the chickpeas in a food processor and process until the chickpeas are broken down and a bit powdery. Add the garlic, tahini, a healthy squeeze of lemon juice,and 1/4 cup of the reserved chickpea liquid and process until smooth, adding more of the reserved chickpea liquid as needed. If you run out of reserved liquid, use water.
3. Once the hummus is the consistency you’d like (I like mine a bit chunky for using on pita with meat, as pictured, and smooth for dipping), stop the processor and taste it for seasoning. Add salt and lemon juice (and tahini, if you’d like) as needed and stir/process it to incorporate. Let the hummus stand for 15 minutes or so and then taste again- the flavor will have blended and bloomed a bit, so you should be able to taste the spices more strongly.
4. Refrigerate until ready to use, making sure to let it sit at room temp for about half an hour before serving.