Homemade Hummus

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Hummus! Houmous! Hummous! Hommos! Humos! Hommus! Hoummos!

Dawn: Is this a spelling test?

Andrew: I’m saying nothing! Which ever way you spell it, this is a cheap and healthy addition to any lunchbox or as  hors d’ouevres at a dinner party.

Dawn: It is a staple of Middle Eastern cuisine, and once you have made this you will never go back to the shop bought variety again. You can tweak this to your own taste, too.

Ingredients

400g can of chickpeas (or equivalent weight soaked and cooked)

1 tbsp tahini paste

1-2 tbsp olive oil (adjust according to taste)

1 clove of garlic, chopped

Juice of 1/2 a lemon (adjust according to taste)

Dawn: Soak your own chickpeas overnight and then cook them as set out in our “How to Rehydrate Dried Chick Peas” recipe at https://forfoodlovers.wordpress.com/2014/01/18/how-to-rehydrate-dried-chick-peas/. They quite literally are so easy to do and work out so much cheaper than buying tins. 

Andrew: Once prepared, this is such an easy dish to make that it is a really good starting point for children who want to cook good food. 

Method

  • Place all your ingredients in a food processor and blitz or pulse until the hummus reaches your preferred texture.

Dawn: Is that it? Insert your own actress/bishop line here!

Andrew: As if I would!

Dawn: You would!

Andrew: I would! Will! But will refrain!

Dawn: Humour aside, this can be served immediately with warm pitta, breadsticks, celery or carrot batons. I also like to add a clove of crushed garlic from time to time when I make this dish. 

Andrew: You can also do your own variations, simply adding roasted pepper, sundried tomato or coriander would make interesting flavour options. Just blitz them in the food processor when the hummus is done. 

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Beetroot and Chickpea Fritters

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Beetroot used to be such a maligned vegetable, as some of us remember from the overuse of it in school dinners,  but here it provides the basis of a family meal which cost pennies to produce.

Dawn: It was quite labour intensive, especially as the beetroot is always messy to prepare.

Andrew: Yes, even with a food processor, you have a lot of washing up, but the end product is quite amazing. 

Ingredients

150g beetroot- raw, and peeled

2 tbsp olive oil

One can (400g) of chickpeas or the equivalent weight of dried chickpeas, soaked overnight and cooked thoroughly

Salt and pepper to season

More olive oil to cook

Method

  • Either grate the beetroot using the course side of a grater or use the grater setting on your food rocessor.

Dawn: We suggest you use rubber gloves and wear an apron. Beetroot juice will stain your clothes and your skin.

Andrew: Beetroot juice was used as a hair dye in the War, but not on rainy days. 

  • In a clean food processor bowl, or in a liquidiser, blitz the chickpeas with the olive oil to make a paste.
  • Mix the chickpea paste with the beetroot.
  • With floured hands, shape this mix into four patties, and flatten slightly so about 1.5-2 cm thick.
  • These can be set aside to chill in the fridge for an hour or overnight), which will keep them together well, or they can be cooked immediately.
  • To cook, heat some olive oil in a frying pan and cook over a medium heat for 5-7 minutes each side, turning carefully.

Dawn: We served these with our Sweet Potato Cakes https://forfoodlovers.wordpress.com/2014/02/19/sweet-potato-cakes/ and some fresh broccoli spears.

Andrew: Rocket and tomato salad, with raw red onions would work too. 

Dawn: How about in a burger bun? Now there is an idea!

For more great recipe ideas, keep following us on http://www.forfoodlovers.co.uk and on Twitter  @Love_Food_UK,thank you.

Sweet Potato Cakes

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We love sweet potatoes in the Love Food kitchen, and this was an experiment, based on traditional potato cakes and rosti.

Dawn: All excellent accompaniments. These have wonderful colour. Is that leek that I spy there?

Andrew: You can see it there, and there is a little red onion too.

Ingredients

Makes 4

One large sweet potato

One leek

Half a red onion

One egg to bind (optional)

Method

  • Grate the sweet potato, or put through the food processor.
  • Either finely chop or grate the leek and red onion
  • Place all the vegetables in a bowl and leave for half an hour.
  • A lot of liquid will come out of the sweet potato. Drain will, and squeeze out in some kitchen towel.
  • Return to the bowl, mix in the egg if using and season with salt and pepper.
  • Take a handful, shape into a ball between floured hands and press down so about 1.5-2 cm thick.
  • Repeat with all of the mix.
  • Heat a large pan, add a little olive oil and fry for 5-7 minutes on each side. Turn carefully so they don’t break up.
  • Serve immediately.

Andrew: These are excellent with any meat dish or with a salad are a filling lunch.

Dawn: And if you vary your seasonings, such as garlic or chilli, you can give a real kick to the cakes!

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