Umeboshi Hummus

Looking for ways to incorporate more fermented foods into your diet? Middle East meets Far East in this mashup of hummus with umeboshi , Japanese-style pickled plums.

Umeboshi Hummus
Prep time
Fermentation time
Yield: 3 cups
  • 8 oz./225 g dried chickpeas
  • filtered water
  • ¼ cup plain kombucha or pickle brine
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 to 1½ lemons (enough to make 5 Tablespoons freshly squeezed juice)
  • ⅓ cup tahini, stirred well
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3-4 umeboshi, with shiso leaves
  • ¼ cup umeshu (plum vinegar)
  1. Soak the chickpeas overnight in enough water to cover them by 2 inches. Add kombucha or pickle brine to soaking water.
  2. The next day, drain, rinse and cook beans on stove, simmering 45 to 60 minutes.
  3. Drain cooked beans, and let cool.
  4. Add beans, salt and garlic to the bowl of a food processor. Take it for a spin.
  5. Add lemon juice and umeshu. Take it for another spin.
  6. Remove pits from umeboshi and dice finely, along with shiso leaves.
  7. Add tahini, umeboshi, and shiso. Process until it starts to become smooth.
  8. Drizzle olive oil into food processor while spinning.
  9. Transfer to a bowl and serve. Due to the high protein content, these are relatively perishable (compared to most other recipes on this site!) Will keep for refrigerator for 3 days. It will get funky (NOT in a good way) after that!


First I soaked dried chickpeas overnight and then cooked them.

Then I added them to a food processor along with some fresh diced garlic and salt and gave it its first spin. Then I add water and fresh squeezed lemon juice and gave it another spin, then tahini gave it another spin, and then I begin to drizzle olive oil into the food processor.


Now this is where we get to add the umeboshi, a Japanese salted pickled plum dish packed with umami and used to flavor other dishes. Umeboshi is often fermented a year or longer; this batch was from two years ago. I chop up the plums, removing the pits and I also pulled some shiso leaves (which fermented with the plums). Then I add these to the hummus and then give it another spin until it’s incorporated. I tasted it along the way and decided I could add one more plum then I felt like it needed a little more flavor, so I added umeshu, which is the brine that the umeboshi expressed when they were being processed and salted prior to fermentation.

Inspired by Alton Brown’s “Hummus for real” recipe.


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