The dark side of the silky hummus (nuttier and wickedly dark)

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Where does hummus get its flavour. It’s the creamy texture of the chickpeas, the nuttiness of tahini, pungent from the olive oil, the underlying kick of garlic, earthy from the cumin and Zattar, tangy from the lemon juice and all of it balanced by salt.

Tahini is an ingredient usually neglected, but it’s decisive in the texture and taste of tahini. Tahini is the pea nut butter of sesame seeds. The white ones. What if you replaced the tahini from white to black? Black sesame is nuttier and a tad bitter. It’s greatly used in desserts like black sesame ice cream, swirl cakes, cookies and many more.

On a whim, I replaced the white tahini with black sesame tahini and viola, the dark side of the hummus is born. A higher amount of lemon juice and some pomegranate molasses to balance the added flavour from the black sesame tahini in the hummus and some more salt. That’s it. Best served with chips and fresh vegetables.
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Ingredients
1cup boiled chickpeas
2 tbsp black sesame tahini
2 tbsp pomegranate molasses
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2-3 cloves garlic
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp sore bought zattar
1/4 cup lemon juice
Salt to taste

1. Whizz everything in a food processor, except the tahini. If the texture is not as creamy as you want it, add more olive oil or water.
2. Balance the salt and keep it just a tad salty
3. Spoon the hummus on a shallow serving bowl. Create a little well and add the tahini. Swirl it through the hummus, so that its just about blending in. So much for prettiness.
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Green Gram Crepes / Chilla (savoury) with a Fresh Summer Salad and Avocado Dip

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Somehow summer results in quite an appetite dip. Craving for cold juices, ice-creams and sorbets, smoothies become meals, really cold lemony and fruity cocktails over rum and whiskey, cold soups, crisp, crunchy, fresh and light salads, soft cold cheeses and all the melons and summer fruit till it is time for the mango takeover.

Here is a brunch I rustled up. Vegetarian. Replace the feta and the ghee and you have a vegan brunch. The great gram crepes are a staple in my house. Again a product of the food processor. This one has an additive, pea protein. Isolated pea protein. I used the one bought from Unived. This raises the protien portion on the plate. The three things are all quick and easy to rustle up and make ahead. If you are planning to chop the salad earlier, leave the dressing for the last.
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Ingredients:

For the crepes
2 cups split green gram soaked for 4 hours
1 tsp cumin
1 green chilli
1 clove garlic
3 tbsp pea protein powder
1/2 cup water
Ghee for making the crepes

For the salad
2 Tomato
2 Onion
3 Cucumber
2 Lemons Juiced
2-3 tbsp Olive Oil
100 gms Feta
Salt to taste

For the Avocado Chimichuri/Pesto/ Sauce/ Dip
1 Avocado
1 bunch Cilantro/ Coriander/ Chives
1 bunch Mint
1 green chilli
3 cloves garlic
2 -3 lemons juiced
Salt to taste

1. Add the great gram and water and grind to a fine paste in a food processor. Depending on the moisture retained in the soaked green grams, you mingle need to adjust the water in the batter. The batter should be thick enough to quote the back of the spoon. Add cumin and pea protein and stir.
Heat a non stick pan. Add some ghee or coconut oil to the pan. Make crepes or pancakes as thick an you want. Stack them up so that they do not become every dry. Cover them with a tea towel.
2. For the salad chop the tomato, onion and cucumber in chunks. Add lemon juice, olive oil and salt. Let this sit for 15 minutes for the lemon juice to seep into the veg and create a fresh pickle kind of flavour.
3. For the Avocado dip, blend the avocado, herbs, garlic, green chilli, salt, lemon juice and blend to a smooth paste. You can adjust the lemon juice as you like. I usually add more salt and lemon juice to anything made with avocado, because avocado is very bland on its own.
4. To assemble, layer a plate with 2 or 3 crepes/ pancakes. Pile on the fresh salad and spoon over the avocado dip/sauce. Finish with freshly crumbed Feta Cheese.
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P.S.
Watch
Netflix – The Good Wife

Movie – Documentary –
Five Foot Two Lady Gaga – https://www.imdb.com/title/tt7291268/
Amy – https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2870648/

Listen

Amy Winehouse – Valerie – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=namFjcOgHSE
Labrinth – Jealous – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=50VWOBi0VFs
Lady Gaga – Joanne – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ll04Zzw5UM
Lady Gaga – If I ever Lose My faith in You -Sting Cover – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XEedn0GXp30
Tony Bennett, Lady Gaga – Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down) – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-huNrHAou-E

Read
Blog – https://ohsheglows.com

Book – Tuesdays with More -https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/6900.Tuesdays_with_Morrie

Poem – May I Feel said He

may i feel said he
(i’ll squeal said she
just once said he)
it’s fun said she

(may i touch said he
how much said she
a lot said he)
why not said she

(let’s go said he
not too far said she
what’s too far said he
where you are said she)

may i stay said he
(which way said she
like this said he
if you kiss said she

may i move said he
is it love said she)
if you’re willing said he
(but you’re killing said she

but it’s life said he
but your wife said she
now said he)
ow said she

(tiptop said he
don’t stop said she
oh no said he)
go slow said she

(cccome?said he
ummm said she)
you’re divine!said he
(you are Mine said she)

– E.E.Cummings

A quick and easy Muhammara

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Summers are the times when cooking is hard and more than just a chore.No matter how well cooled the rest of the house is, the kitchen emanates heat. The hearth of the house. The least used the better during those times.

But then don’t we think hot food is more scrumptious. Not always. Take cue for the middle eastern cuisine. Flavourful, colourful crudités served along with pita, fabulous dips, kebabs and fresh soft cheeses. The best is that you can make these ahead, store in the fridge and use it as a spread too.

If the humble humus is boring, the Muhammara is your best bet. Smokey, sweet, nutty and chunky. Very easy to rustle up. All ingredients are cold, and just need a whizz in your reliable food processor.
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Ingredients:

4-5 bell peppers
1-2 red chillies
2-3 cloves garlic
1 tomato
1 cup walnuts
1 cup stale bread
2-3 tbsp pomegranate molasses
4-5 tbsp olive oil
Juice of half lemon
Salt to taste

1. Char grill the bell peppers. To do this, place the peppers, one at a time on a low flame. Turn over as soon as they start charring on the surface. As the skin in thin, prolonged charring will leave no bell pepper skin. Once charred, allow to cool. Clean the charred skin and deseed
2. Take all the ingredients and blend in a food processor. The mixture will be smooth and slightly chunky.
3. To serve, add more olive oil. Great with bread, crackers and crudities

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P.S.
Watch
Netflix – the Mindhunter

Movie – Whiplash – https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2582802/
Listen

Van Morrison – Into the Mystic – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CEvsDuJYEnI
Don McLean – Mountains O’Mourne – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iEZIKSm78k8

Read
Blog – http://www.apt2bbakingco.com A great blog through brooklyn

Book – The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7815.The_Year_of_Magical_Thinking

Poem – (I tried to find this book but I couldn’t)
Little sleep’s head sprouting hair in the moonlight

2

I have heard you tell
the sun, don’t go down, I have stood by
as you told the flower, don’t grow old,
don’t die. Little Maud,

I would blow the flame out of your silver cup,
I would suck the rot from your fingernail,
I would brush your sprouting hair of the dying light,
I would scrape the rust off your ivory bones,
I would help death escape through the little ribs of your body,
I would alchemize the ashes of your cradle back into wood,
I would let nothing of you go, ever,

until washerwomen
feel the clothes fall asleep in their hands,
and hens scratch their spell across hatchet blades,
and rats walk away from the culture of the plague,
and iron twists weapons toward truth north,
and grease refuse to slide in the machinery of progress,
and men feel as free on earth as fleas on the bodies of men,
and the widow still whispers to the presence no longer beside her
   in the dark.

And yet perhaps this is the reason you cry,
this the nightmare you wake screaming from:
being forever
in the pre-trembling of a house that falls.
– Galway Kinnel