The newest of these hummusiot also happens to be the best.
Mimi’s Hummus opened in February on Cortelyou Road, the Restaurant Row of Ditmas Park.
The tiny square shopfront is sunny and airy, with only eight tables. Perforated wood planks, swooping up to the ceiling, are a clever update of Middle Eastern latticework. The owner, Mimi Kitani, is Israeli, but her mother grew up in Morocco and her father in the Kurdish region of Iraq. Culinary traces from each country surface in her well-edited selection of small plates.
The menu notes “All dishes are homemade,” and that’s evident in the vibrancy of the flavors. Ms. Kitani’s aunt grinds the za’atar spice mix by hand in Israel. Crimson-stained turnips are fished out of a pickling jar brimming with garlic cloves.
The velvety hummus takes five forms ($8 to $9). In one version, bright with lemon, it serves as a bed for whole chickpeas that have the bite of beans properly soaked overnight. In another, the same hummus base turns earthy and fragrant when finished with cinnamon-laced ground beef and pine nuts.
As a complement, the stuffed grape leaves ($6) are moist but sturdy, collapsing only once in the mouth. Cauliflower, not the sexiest of vegetables, gets a swagger from a bold toss of parsley and tahini ($5). It nearly upstages the hummus, and could inspire a following of its own.