This recipe is part of a Wanderlust TV series, Play With Your Food.
A vibrant green swirl of za’atar zhug in a bowl of creamy hummus—yin and yang. Feel free to play around with how you add the za’atar zhug.
Fine sea salt
3 garlic cloves, peeled
¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
3 cups cooked chickpeas
½ cup tahini
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Za’atar zhug swirl:
¼ cup za’atar
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 small green chile peppers, seeded and finely chopped
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon ground coriander
¼ cup finely chopped cilantro
¼ cup finely chopped parsley
2 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
Bring a small pot of salted water to a boil. Drop in the garlic cloves and let them cook for a minute, then remove the pot from the heat and let the garlic cool in the liquid.
In the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade, combine the cooked garlic cloves, lemon juice, and ¼ teaspoon of salt. Pulse until finely chopped. Add the chickpeas, tahini, olive oil, 1 teaspoon of salt, and a splash of the garlic cooking liquid. Blend for several minutes, stopping the machine and scraping down the sides of the bowl every so often, until the hummus is creamy and smooth. Taste and add more lemon juice, olive oil, and salt, if needed.
In a bowl, mix together the za’atar, olive oil, chile pepper, cumin, coriander, cilantro, parsley, and lime juice.
To serve, spoon the hummus into a serving bowl. Smooth the top, then use a spoon to carve a shallow swirl into the hummus, starting from the center of the bowl and working your way out to the edges. Drizzle the za’atar zhug sauce into the swirl, using it like a moat to contain the sauce.
Maria Zizka is a Berkeley-born food writer, cookbook collaborator, and recipe developer. Most recently she co-authored the forthcoming Sqirl cookbook, Everything I Want to Eat, which will be published by Abrams in fall 2016. She is currently working with Elisabeth Prueitt and Chad Robertson of Tartine Bakery.