Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Hummus. I don't even know where to start. I think my mum introduced me to hummus one summer. Then I became friends with A, who informed me that you could make hummus at home. This was before the days of me doing more in the kitchen than toasting a bagel, obviously. A came to visit me and brought along a tub of hummus that her amazing Lebanese momma made for me. oh em gee.

It wasn't until 3 years later that I made my first (successful) attempt at the dip. It was in Spain, where I learned that you can buy garbanzo beans in a jar, you don't have to go through the long process of soaking and boiling to achieve a tender garbanzo. This was about the time that I went beyond the microwavable section of the supermarket.

Pita bread isn't commonplace in Spain. My friend Irish A is a genius though, and offered the solution of carrot batons. Irish A makes a mean carrot baton, I still attempt the perfect width as she does, but have come to terms that my chopping requires a lot more practice before it develops the skill that she has. A lot of the hummus and carrot baton combination was consumed on the Costa del Sol.

The hummus continues to evolve. In the last year I've learned that to get the texture perfect, you have to peel the garbanzo beans. Peeling an entire jar of garbanzo beans is like getting the fruit out of a pomegranate. It takes practice and patience. But once you get it, it's a breeze. Soon you will be staying with friends all over the place, earning your room and board by filling their refrigerators with tubs of the snack. You'll be teaching them the best technique that you know on how to peel a garbanzo bean, and having endless discussions about what could make this particular hummus even better: Less salt. Roasting the garlic first. More tahini. Trust me, it's good BBQ conversation.

As you know, I am a fan of food blogs, and Peas and Thank You is one of them. Today Momma Pea listed Apricot Cinnamon Almond Hummus as a starter for Thanksgiving. I can't remember at which point I saw this, as I slept very little last night, and spent the day in meetings. But after dinner with Mum and E, I had them drop me and the Os off at the supermarket so that I could pick up the ingredients to try this enticing recipe.

Apricot Cinnamon Almond Hummus

  • 1/2 can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 c. raw almonds
  • 4 dried apricots
  • 3 dried dates, pitted
  • 1 t. cinnamon
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 2 T. agave
  • splash of water

Combine all ingredients in a high-speed blender or food processor and blend until smooth.

I followed this recipe almost to a T, replacing the agave with maple syrup, and I used 6 dates instead of 3 because the dates I had were kind of small.

You've probably noticed by now that all of my food photos are taken in this small space. I kid you not, this is the extent of my counter space. I do plan on looking for ways to spice up the pictures shortly. Maybe in the New Year. Maybe when I sleep regular hours. Who am I kidding.

The Apricot Cinnamon Almond Hummus:

I don't know what I was expecting when I took a bite, but I was not expecting what I got. It is an amazing balance of flavours. It is thicker than normal hummus, and the cinnamon + almond + sweetness made me feel like I was curled up in a blanket on the couch on a cold day with a mug of hot chocolate. Make it. Snack it. Love it.

And yes, it goes well with carrot batons.

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