Hummus with Spiced Lamb is a dish I love to order in Jacques Restaurant from their tapas menu. Granted it has only happened twice, but still, it is good enough that it is the first thing I look for on their menu. It is such a simple idea but packed full of flavour. There is it served with crusty white bread and the creamy hummus with the hot, almost crispy spiced lamb is a delightful contrast of flavours and textures.
So of course I had to make it myself. There are recipes for similar dishes in Nigella’s How to Eat and in Ottolenghi’s Jerusalem, but I played around with it until I was happy with the recipe below. This Hummus with Spiced Lamb is delicious for a light meal or as part of a mezze of sharing plates.
Useful tips & links:
- In Ottolenghi’s recipe for hummus, he uses dried chickpeas. I have yet to be convinced that it is worth the soaking and cooking time needed for this but I do agree with him on removing the skins from the chickpeas. It certainly is a lot of faff and completely impractical for a large amount but for one tin I am willing to do it for the smoother texture you get from your hummus. You don’t have to do this and of course you can always buy a good quality hummus if you like.
- The hummus will keep covered in the fridge for a couple of days so you can make it ahead of time but make sure to bring it to room temperature before serving.
- Ideally this should be served immediately once the lamb is cooked, as the heat contrasts with the creamy hummus perfectly.
- Don’t scrimp on the pomegranate seeds, the little burst of juiciness really lifts this dish. I have to be honest I took these pics and then added loads more!
- If you have leftover hummus and are looking for ways to use it, have a look at my Grilled Halloumi with Pepper and Hummus on Sourdough Toast or Beetroot Feta and Chickpea Salad. Or if you want to add extra flavours to your hummus Frances’ Lemon and Coriander Hummus on The Honest Project looks delicious.
Hummus with Spiced Lamb
Serves 2-4 as a tasting plate
For the Hummus:
- 400g tin of chickpeas, drained
- 1 clove of garlic, crushed
- Iced water
- 3 tablespoons of lemon juice
- 1½ tablespoons of tahini
- 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling on top
- Salt and pepper
- A pinch of ground cumin (optional)
For the Lamb:
- Olive Oil
- 1 shallot, peeled and finely diced
- 1 clove of garlic, crushed
- 300g of minced lamb
- 1½ teaspoons of ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon of allspice
- ½ teaspoon of ground coriander
- A pinch of ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon of harissa paste (optional)
- A pinch of smoked paprika
- Freshly grated nutmeg
- Salt and Pepper
- 1 tablespoon of pomegranate molasses
- 2 tablespoons of pine nuts
- Pomegranate seeds
- Mint or parsley leaves
- Aleppo Pepper (optional)
- First make the hummus, which can be prepared the day before. Drain and thoroughly rinse the chickpeas. Then give the chickpeas a squeeze to pop them out of their skins (see tips above) and tip them into a food processor. Add the garlic, lemon juice, tahini and a little iced water and blitz them until you have a smooth paste. Taste and season with salt and pepper and the cumin if you are using it. Taste again to see if it needs more lemon or tahini and if you want a thinner paste add some extra water.
- At this point you can store the hummus in the fridge or if using straight away, swirl some on to a plate and drizzle over a little extra virgin olive oil.
- Next heat a dry non stick frying pan over a medium heat. Toast the pine nuts in the dry pan until they are golden brown. Set them aside until later.
- Put the pan back on the heat and add some olive oil. Gently fry the chopped shallot for a few minutes until soft and then add the crushed garlic and fry for another minute.
- Add the lamb to the pan, breaking it up with a fork as it cooks and add the cumin, allspice, coriander and cinnamon. Taste the lamb to see how much heat you want to add to it and then add your harissa, paprika and grate over a little nutmeg and then stir through the pomegranate molasses. Season with salt and pepper as needed.
- Working quickly, serve the lamb on top of the hummus and top with the toasted pine nuts, pomegranate seeds and roughly tear over mint or parsley leaves. I can’t resist adding a little Aleppo Pepper for extra colour and mild spice.
- Serve immediately with warm flatbread or toasted pitta.