Yesterday I made black bean hummus. I love traditional Lebanese hummus, but black bean hummus has a different flavor and texture to offer, and quite frankly, the more hummuses (?)in the world there are, the better. Plus, here in Miami black bean hummus is ubiquitous. I keep seeing it everywhere I go, and so I thought it was relevant to my work here. The other day at Books and Books on Linoln Road they randomly brought us out a small plate with a dollop of the dip with some water crackers. That was when I knew I would make my own.
I had made some for my friends last May when our book club meeting coincided with Cinco de Mayo (the strange American holiday that gives everyone an excuse to get drunk off of Margaritas). Everyone loved the recipe and I swore I would have posted it, but somehow it has taken me this long. I had vowed to prepare the Black Bean version with pumpkin seed butter instead of tahini, but nowadays no one can really be bothered by buying expensive ingredients just for a few recipes, so I thought I would stick to tahini, which is a bit more versatile.
So the recipe is this:
1 cup dried black beans
2 garlic cloves
2 juicy limes (about 1/8 cup)
2 tablespoons tahini
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon ground cumin
Cover the black beans with water and leave to soak for 8 hours to overnight. Drain the beans of their soaking liquid and place in a medium-sized pot amply covered with fresh water.
Bring the pot to a boil, then lower to a simmer and cook for 1 ½ hours or until cooked through. The beans should mush easily when you squeeze them between your fingers. Drain the beans of their cooking liquid.
In a food processor blend the garlic cloves with some salt until they are finely chopped. Add the beans and continue to chop while slowly pouring in the olive oil. Add the tahini and lime juice and season with the cumin. Continue chopping until it becomes a smooth puree. If you need to add more liquid you can add a few tablespoons more of oil or just plain water.
Feel free to add minced jalapeno, chipotle powder, smoky paprika, or even roasted red pepper. Whatever tickles your fancy. I like to serve it on a plate with pita chips or flat bread and some cilantro. Jazz up the plate with freshly grated carrots or chopped tomato- anything goes as long as its vibrant.
Some people might complain that I start with dried beans, rather than canned. That is the way I cook, and I think it is important to know how to do those things.