I wouldn’t mind betting that hummus is one of the most widely eaten foods in the world today. Fifteen years ago, it was probably only known to a select few who had visited the Middle East. But now you can find it in literally any supermarket, corner shop or health food shop in Britain. And not only that but the sheer variety of hummus flavours is tremendous. Sweet chilli hummus, lemon and coriander hummus, red pepper hummus, caramelised onion hummus… the list goes on. This probably has something to do with the emergence of ready-made, processed food on British supermarket shelves, but you also can’t deny the fact that hummus is just so incredibly tasty.
However, it’s important to get hummus right. The original blend made with chickpeas, garlic, lemon juice, tahini and oil is often unbeatable but adding other flavours can make the most delicious dip. I’ve tried a lot of different types of hummus but this is my favourite at the moment. Sun-dried tomatoes have the most amazing flavour and what’s so great is that even though they’ve been dried in the sun for a few days, they keep their nutritional value – still rich in vitamin C and lycopene. The chives give a subtle taste which isn’t overpowering like raw onion, blending perfectly with the rich sun-dried tomatoes. As well as this, chives are pretty good for you, containing many antioxidants which help destroy free radicals. They’re also rich in the nutrient choline which helps with so many things in the body such as sleep, muscle movement, absorption of fat and inflammation reduction – all of which are pretty great. More significantly, chives are SO easy to grow! In our garden they’re scattered across a big area, just poking out amongst the grass, as well as growing in a sprout from our herb patch.
Like a lot of people I know, I adore hummus and eat it almost every day. It just goes with everything: as a dip for carrots and peppers; spread onto rye bread; dolloped on top of a rocket, avocado and sunflower seed salad; stirred into quinoa. The trouble is lots of shop-bought hummus has mysterious ingredients and, more often than not, added sugar – which is never a good thing. Combining this with the fact it’s one of the easiest and quickest things to make, I can’t really think of an excuse for not giving it a go at home. I hope you can’t either..!
Makes one large bowl of hummus:
- 1 cup/230g cooked chickpeas
- 1 clove of garlic
- 1 tablespoon of garlic-infused olive oil
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- 3-5 tablespoons of water (depending on how thick or creamy you like it)
- 1 tablespoon of tahini
- A handful of chives
- Approx 10 sundried tomato pieces (depending on size)
- 1 lemon
- A pinch of salt and pepper
Squeeze out the lemon juice using a citrus juicer and then place all of the ingredients into a food processor and blend for about 3 minutes until smooth. It really is as simple as that! Serve immediately with anything you fancy (or just eat with a spoon) and savour the wonderful flavours.