I'm not sure this is the best hummus I've ever eaten, but it was very good. I've eaten a lot of hummus over the years and found a lot of variation in the quality of the stuff sold in grocery stores. It's easy to make your own, plus less expensive, and the quality is usually better. This recipe comes from Cook's Illustrated, and aimed to reproduce a creamy, restaurant-style hummus, without any grainy texture. I followed the instructions and produced yummy hummus in about five minutes. The recipe said to wait 30 minutes, to let the flavors meld. I stared at the bowl, tried hard to obey, but ate half of it immediately.
Besides being creamy, the flavors were nicely balanced, with no one element overwhelming the others. The lemon juice, garlic, and cumin were just right, in my opinion.
Not surprisingly, Cook's notes that using dried chickpeas you cook yourself produces even better hummus. If you want to take that route (and I do) use 1/2 cup dried chickpeas in place of the canned ones.
Restaurant Style Hummus
1/4 cup water
3 Tablespoons lemon juice
6 Tablespoons well stirred tahini
2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 15 ounce can drained and rinsed chickpeas
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cumin
pinch of cayenne
about 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
Combine the water and lemon juice in one bowl, and the tahini and oil in another. Set aside about 12 of the whole chickpeas for a garnish.
Put the chickpeas, salt, garlic, cumin, and cayenne in a food processor and process for about 15 seconds. Scrap down the sides of the processor. Then add the lemon water mix through the feed tube with the processor running for about 1 minute. Scrap down the sides several times. Then add the oil and tahini, with the processor running, until the hummus is fluffy.
Put the hummus in a bowl, garnish with the cilantro and whole chickpeas, and drizzle with some olive oil if you want.