Fattet hummos is a creamy, decadent savory dish that is usually eaten during the weekends or festive occasions. Not because it’s hard to make, but in my opinion – because you want to nap after eating it, so you need the day off! It’s made from chickpeas, yogurt, tahini, ghee, pita bread, lemon and garlic. Some blogs out there call it a ‘bread pudding’, but I think people should get used to the word ‘fette’, which is a category of food on its own. In Syrian breakfast restaurants you have a wide array of ‘fettes’ to choose from. You can have eggplant fatte, chicken fatte, meat fatte… and so forth.
The dish ‘fatte’ derives from the word ‘fatfet’, which means to tear into small pieces. In this case, it’s the pita bread that we’re tearing into pieces – and which makes up the base of this dish. Stories were told that this dish arose from needing to put into the use the leftover pieces of pita, since it’s considered a sin to throw away food. So this dish is sort of the ‘fried rice’ of the arabs. The dish where they throw together the leftover bread and turn it to something magical.
Fattet hummus therefore is a creamy mix of torn toasted pita pieces, topped with soft boiled chickpeas, and a lemony, garlicy, tahini sauce. This is then garnished with more chickpeas, and toasted bread – and for that final Syrian touch – a splash of hot ghee that sizzles all over the told.
Yes, this dish needs to be eaten immediately, and the sizzle ‘tisssss’ is the sound all of us around the table used to wait for. It meant we can dig in!
Syrian Fattet Hummos
- Large Saucepan with Lid or Instant Pot
- Food Processor
- 600 g chickpeas - ready cooked, either from can or cooked from dried
- 4 garlic cloves - whole
- 1 tsp cumin - ground
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 liter water
- ½ tsp salt
- 200 g pita bread (or 3 large pitas) - torn or cut into 2cm pieces
- 2-3 tbsp olive oil
- ½ tsp cumin - ground
- ¼ tsp salt
- 200 g greek yogurt - full fat
- 150 g tahini
- 60 ml lemon juice - around 2 lemons
- 1 garlic clove - crushed
- ¾ tsp salt
- ¼ cup ghee
- pine nuts - they're expensive, so use as much as you want!
- parsley - small, chopped finely
- 1 tsp paprika
- pomegranate seeds - optional
- Add all the chickpea ingredients to a large saucepan and heat on medium to infuse and warm them. Simmer until the softness you like, and keep them on a low fire until you you finishing prepping.
Toast the Pita
- Preheat oven to 200°C / 400°F
- Cut up the pita bread into small diamonds or squares. You can tear them with your fingers if you want a more authentic look, or use scissors.
- Toss them in a bowl along with the olive oil, cumin and salt and mix.
- Put them onto a parchment lined baking sheet and pop them into the oven for around 10-15 minutes. Keep an eye on them.
- They should be nice and toasted. Put ⅔ of them into your serving dish and reserve the rest for topping.
Make the Sauce
- Measure out around 200g of hot cooked chickpeas and put in into your food processor.
- Add 100ml of the hot chickpea cooking water. If it cooled down, heat it up a bit in the microwave.
- Add all the ingredients for the sauce: yogurt, tahini, lemon juice, garlic and salt.
- Process the mixture until it becomes nice and smooth. Try to keep it warm until you assemble the dish. The ideal way would be a metal pot on top of a saucepan. But to save time and cleaning, just try to work a bit faster or time yourself properly!
Assemble the Fatte
- Arrange a nice big deep serving dish (or a few small ones if you want individual portions!). Cover the bottom with crispy bread - but not all! Leave some for garnish.
- Drain the remaining chickpeas from the pot, and arrange on top.
- Next, pour in the fette sauce you made all over as the 3rd layer.
- Top with a bit more of the crunchy pita bread!
- Heat the ghee the pinenuts until they lightly brown - if you're scared to burn them, you can toast them separately but it's an added step! You kind of have to do this step at the same time you're assembling as you need to pour it when it's hot. Sorry for the blurry image!
- Then pour it all on top! Have an audience!
- Garnish with chopped parsley and paprika! You can even sprinkle pomegranate seeds if you have some.
- Serve right away!