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Cookbook Author Julia Turshen and the Unifying Power of Food

New American Economy, a bipartisan immigration research and advocacy group, teamed up with chef Julia Turshen and the League of Kitchens to film a cooking class with League of Kitchens instructor Jeanette Chawki, originally from Lebanon. What started as a class in New York City to learn an authentic Lebanese recipe for hummus evolved into a deeper conversation about the unifying power of food.

Jeanette Chawki’s hummus recipe:

HUMMUS (Chickpea Spread): Recipe courtesy Jeanette Chawki and the League of Kitchens 

Once you make Jeanette’s hummus, you’ll never go back to store bought again. It’s smooth with a lemony garlic punch. Jeanette serves her hummus in a traditional clay bowl garnished with her best quality olive oil and sprinkled with Aleppo pepper. 

Hummus: 1 cup dried chickpeas 6 cups water 1 1⁄4 teaspoon fine salt 1/3 cup tahini 5 tablespoons fresh lemon juice 2 cloves garlic, chopped 

Garnish: 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 1⁄2 teaspoon Aleppo pepper (see Cook’s Notes) 

Soak the chickpeas in a generous amount of water overnight. 

Rinse the chickpeas and transfer to a medium saucepan. Add the water and 1 teaspoon of the salt. Bring to a boil over high heat. Skim the foam that rises to the top with a spoon and discard. Continue to boil until the chickpeas are tender, about 30 minutes. 

Remove from the heat. Drain the chickpeas over a bowl, reserving the cooking water and 10 chickpeas for garnish. 

Combine the chickpeas, 1⁄2 cup of the cooking water, the tahini, lemon juice, garlic, and the remaining 1⁄4 teaspoon salt in a food processor. Pulse until completely smooth. 

Transfer the hummus to a small bowl. Drag the back of a soup spoon 1 inch from the edge of the bowl to create a moat around the center. Pour the olive oil in the moat. Decorate the center and edges with the reserved chickpeas and garnish with a few sprinkles of Aleppo pepper. 

Cook’s Notes: Aleppo pepper is a dried red pepper popular in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisine. It has a medium spice level and a subtle sweetness. Jeanette frequently uses Aleppo pepper in her dishes. 

Makes 4 to 6 servings 

11 Lebanese Cooking with Jeanette | Immersion Workshop #1 

Prep: 15 minutes, plus overnight soaking time Cook: 30 minutes

About NAE

New American Economy is a bipartisan research and advocacy organization fighting for smart federal, state, and local immigration policies that help grow our economy and create jobs for all Americans. More…