Firstly, Happy New Year to everyone. Whether you’ve decided it’s going to be a better year than last, take up something new, or simply enjoy every day, I hope it proves healthy and happy. Every year, people make lists of things to accomplish in the forthcoming months. I rarely bother, mainly as I know I’ll enjoy doing the things I enjoy and if I want to do something, I’ll do it, whether its on a list or not.
So, in my head only as I cannot commit them to paper, I am hoping to continue the blog with a little more regularity (I’m sure I said this last year too, but that sort of proves my point!) and get back into the veg. plot, with a little help from Frankie now she’s old enough not to eat the soil!
The first post of the year is Hummus, or however you choose to spell it. This is something I’ve only recently got into so I thought it might be more fun to make it from scratch rather than use the shop bought variety. Especially since it’s something my little one loves and making it myself gives me more control over the quantities of things like added salt. I searched online and found a huge array of recipes based on the basics of combining chick peas with tahini, lemon, garlic and salt. Two main articles inspired me though, and I based my recipe on Helen’s version.
One of the main tricks I gleaned was to remove the skins from the chickpeas to ensure a smooth dip. Now, this seemed like a good idea until I began, whereupon the enormity of skinning 500g worth of the little suckers seemed a little overwhelming! I chose to skin them after about an hour's soaking, rather than after cooking them and this worked well when it came to the speed of boiling them to soften. After a couple of hours, however, and a quick trick of popping a few handfuls into a dry tea towel and rubbing vigorously, they were done. I returned them to soak and went to bed!
When boiling, do as suggested and after ten minutes, remove the ‘scum’ from the pan, rinse, refill with fresh water and continue boiling. I also popped in a little bicarbonate of soda to help the mushability factor. Once soft, it really is simply a case of adding everything to your desired taste and spooning in a little of the cooking water to let it down. I chose to top mine simply with olive oil and paprika.
One was with crispy onions…
…and another with roasted red pepper.
The leftover chick peas were frozen with a little of the cooking liquid to use later. Apart from the skinning of the peas, it really was easy. And the dips are remarkably tasty, but then I did add extra garlic as suggested by @joeleshark! Thanks cuz.