Thursday, 13 November 2014

Entering the Hummus Wars!

This is a brave post, a very brave post! I have decided, after a great deal of hand wringing and a couple of sleepless nights to enter 'the hummus wars'. Yes, I'm sharing my recipe for hummus!

I still can't quite believe that I'm putting my recipe out there - alongside the recipes of great foodwriter Yotam Ottolenghi, and chef with cred,  George Calombaris!

Made from scratch my recipe is different in that it has a lovely 'tang' or 'bite'. It can be varied endlessly, and, well - everyone I know loves it and I'm regularly emailing the recipe to converts! So, (taking a big breath) here it is!

Hummus - My Way!


250 grams dried chick peas* – I prefer to use Ord River chickpeas, but use any good quality chickpea
1 tablespoon creamy tahini (health section of supermarket)
1 teaspoon cumin (powdered)
1 mild red chilli diced (optional)
Juice and grated rind of 1 lemon (optional)
½ cup vinegar (homebrand) plus extra
½ cup extra virgin olive oil plus extra
Salt and pepper


Soak the dried chickpeas in a very large bowl of water overnight. The chickpeas will swell up absorbing much of the water. Cover with more water if needed. Next morning pour the chickpeas and water into a large saucepan, add more water to cover the chickpeas by 3 to 5 centimetres. 

Bring to the boil and cook gently until the chickpeas are soft when tested. This will take 15 – 20 minutes. 

Tip:do closely watch that the chickpeas don’t boil over – it makes a big mess!

Drain the chickpeas into a colander when warm and place in food processor. Add the tahini, cumin, vinegar, oil, salt and pepper to taste together with the chilli and lemon juice and rind if using. You could also add a clove of crushed garlic at this point if you wish. 


Keep adding equal quantities of vinegar and oil until the mixture is ‘loose’. It thickens with standing!
Adjust the seasonings to taste.

Serve with pieces of pitta bread, savoury biscuits, grissini or vegetable crudites. It makes a healthy and delicious breakfast spread on grainy bread toast topped with slices of tomato and avocado, and can be used as a spread in sandwiches.

This makes enough for a crowd - if it lasts that long!



*Use 2 cans of drained chickpeas if you prefer

**The cheapest vinegars give the bitiest tang to this hummus and allow it to keep for several days in the refrigerator. Hummus is no place for a delicate vinegar!

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

In My Kitchen ... in November

I can't believe that it's November already and time for another In My Kitchen post! This year is just flying by at our house!

Because a number of family members have birthdays during October and November I have the perfect excuse to whip up a celebratory cake or two! This one - from the archive that is my 'Brown Book' (and the repository of my favourite recipes across the wonderful years of my marriage) I hadn't made for years. It's named Gateau Belle Helene - and after all these years I don't know where I originally found the recipe.  I decided to give it a modern twist by poaching the pears in a syrup flavoured with honey, star anise and black peppercorns. It got a thumbs up all round!

I enjoy tea and find this one, 'Just Lavender' from T2, to be delicate and calming. It's a perfect drink to have before bedtime.

I have read a number of IMK posts featuring Heilala vanilla and was thrilled to find that my favourite greengrocers shop 'Metropolitan Fresh Fruiters' at 'The Avenues' Shopping Centre, St Peters is now stocking it. I can't wait to put those pods to use - the perfume alone is heavenly!

In my kitchen this month I put the Nelshaby Capers featured in last month's post to good use. Together with a bay leaf, fresh thyme and basil from the garden they added superb flavour to this chick pea braise.

I tidied my utensil drawer recently - and to my amazement filled this stone jar with wooden spoons, spatulas and balloon whisks! No wonder the drawer was overflowing!

With the warmer weather upon us it is a pleasure to again cook outdoors in the garden. I do love a good chargrilled vegetable or two!

Finally, my kitchen disaster for the month! In a brain fade moment, whilst making a gorgeous White Chocolate and Cinnamon buttercream icing, I turned the mixer to high - just after adding the icing sugar to the butter. That icing sugar flew everywhere! The mess, oh, the mess! I won't be doing that again any time soon!

Have you had a kitchen disaster recently? Do tell!

If you have enjoyed peeking into my kitchen this month do click through to Celia's Fig Jam and Lime Cordial blog where you can peek into her kitchen and the kitchens of bloggers from around the world.

Thanks so much for dropping by!



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