Sunday, December 12, 2010

Snow Day and Hummus

It snowed last night. It snowed about seven inches, which, in the big picture, is not that much considering some of the days we had last year and what Minnesota got today. I do tend to get overwhelmed by the snow, but I do my best to calm the hell down and not to freak out all the time. Sometimes the Crazy Lady comes out, but I think it's probably entertaining to some of you, especially my sister, so I'm okay with it.

My friend Lacy says that living in Wisconsin and getting through the winters probably makes us hearty. I love that. I'm sure that all the shoveling and pushing cars and trudging through knee-deep snow would help to build muscle and strengthen something. I don't know; your core? Your spirit? Something. Unfortunately, I had almost none of that today. My new downstairs neighbors are big proponents of "throwing money at the problem" and thusly hired somebody to come plow our long-ass driveway. I mean, it's really long. You know what? I am fine with this. That's totally cool; I'll just stay inside whilst somebody else does the work. No problem. As I waited for the four stout men to show up and plow, I thought I'd make some hummus. So many people ask for the recipe, and although I can't give measurements (seriously, it's all just adding stuff until it tastes good), I can provide some pretty pictures of the process!

Here are the basic ingredients: canned chick peas, tahini, garlic, lemon juice, and salt. Some people use dried chick peas, but you have to soak those overnight, and then you have to plan ahead and lately, I can't plan beyond the next half hour, so canned it is! You can buy tahini anywhere - it's basically a sesame seed paste (my dad uses it like peanut butter!). The garlic, as my dear friend Jess pointed out, should probably be fresh, not jarred like this. But I was snowed in, man, and I had zero fresh garlic. Anyhow, the ingredients:

You should probably get a Magic Bullet if you want to make hummus quickly and with little clean up. Food processors and blenders work just fine, but the Magic Bullet has a much better infomercial, I'd be willing to bet. Have you seen it? I love it so much. I've seen it at the very least 50 times. You should definitely watch it. Oh hey, here it is!
Part Two is here. "Dinna's always a production!" says the young actress dressed as an old lady with fake cigarette ash. "Yuck, I hate broccoli!" Grown ass man...But I digress. Back to the hummus! Drain the juice from the chick peas, but keep it somewhere - you'll use it later.

Dump in some tahini. I'm so bad at estimating, or guesstimating, if you will (do you know "guesstimating" is a word? Spell check didn't even underline it! Wow), but I think it's somewhere between 3-5 tablespoons.

Throw in the lemon juice, some garlic, and some salt. I can't give measurements because I think it all depends on how garlicky you want it, how salty, etc. You can probably add your own spices at this point too (a lot of people like cumin), but it's really good this way, with nothing else added!

This is the hummus when it's basically done. I put it through the ole Bullet for quite awhile to make it as smooth as possible. At this point in the process, I also pour in the liquid from the canned chick peas little by little to help moisten it. You don't want to put in too much as it will get too watery. So be patient. And use discretion.

When you're done with all this, put it in a tupperware and refrigerate it for awhile before eating. So delicious!

Wonderfully enough, by the time I finished making hummus, the men from Mr. Plow had come. I mean, I assume every plow company is called Mr. Plow. Or the Plow King. Either way. Look what they did to the front porch!

And look at this beautiful long and sort of snow-free driveway! That driveway is seriously long. There was a good 5-6 feet behind where I was standing, and the driveway goes all the way back to those faraway trees, and then to the right and behind the house. So much to shovel...

I was in heaven when I saw this. It only took me about 20-25 minutes to dig out my car and shovel around it. This, compared to hours otherwise. Wooo! All of a sudden, I don't mind snow so much!

To celebrate a successful snow day, I had some booze with some cute star-shaped ice cubes. I'd been talking to my sister on the phone when she mentioned that she'd had a few tiny wine glasses of sweet vermouth this evening. This is something we always used to do when we'd go to Jiddu's (my grandfather) house on Christmas, before going to the big family dinner. It's customary to visit everybody in their own homes around the holidays. We'd go to his house and sit for awhile, eating candies and potato chips out of small glass bowls, and eventually, somebody would bring out a tray of these tiny wine glasses with sweet vermouth in them. Delicious! Cheers abu cheers, Jiddu!

Okay, to be honest, I didn't have any sweet vermouth. This is actually Amaretto; it was the closest I could get! Still delicious. And I have no idea how this got in my house. Who bought this?

Amaretto makes pretty pictures. Jess, did you bring this over last Nude Years? Thanks for the pretty booze.
One last thing about the snow day: boots everywhere. There are four pair of black boots sitting inside my front door. Four. Ridiculous.

You know what? Snow days make me feel disjointed. There ya go.


Tara said...

Star shaped ice! Win!
Also, it is essential to have the makings for hummus when you're snowed in, I could live for a week off of it when I make it, I make a double batch. Also I use like 3 times the tahini, I wonder how it differs in taste? One time I tried to use dried chick peas, soaked 'em and cooked 'em and everything, but then ya know what? I forgot I made them and days went by and I never made the hummus, so I'm all about canned.
Good job with your snow day.

Reem Tara said...

I LOVE star shaped anything, and I love anything-shaped ice! I dunno about the tahini - I feel like I use a lot, but my "guesstimation" may be way off.

Sissy Van Dyke said...

Yum, thanks for the recipe! I love hummus, but I've never made it. Since I hate to cook, anything I can soak, mix and refrigerate is bonus! I'll let you know how it comes out.

bunnypancake said...

I'm proud to say that I have friends who drive across town if I mention I'm making hummus. I agree with the fresh vs. jar hummus, but in a pinch, what's a girl to do.

The biggest secret to getting it super savory is to use a mortal and pestal with sea salt to make the garlic into a paste. I also like to add just a little bit of the lemon zest to the mix.

Although the snow in ATL is nothing like there, my little one and I have to stay inside all day today because of the freeze. Now I'm definitely going to make some hummus. MMMM.

Reem Tara said...

Bunny - I'm gonna have to try your tip. Thanks!

Sara Ashes said...

Dad: Get me some tahini please. Tahini to eat.

Mom: Tahini to eat? What do you think I'm going to get you tahini to put on your face???

jx said...

Aw, I did bring the "Amaretto of Love" on NYE 2010. I'm glad it was around for your time of need. Sorry I got a little edgy about that garlic. Even today at the g-store, I spotted the jarred garlic and got a little testy feeling. "How do they even get away with calling that garlic?" the old lady in my head says. I just can't shake it.

Thank you for making homemade hummus. And posting the deliciousness here.

Reem Tara said...

Ah, you're fine. At least you used the word "testy," which, you know, is funny.

SophisticatedBrew said...

Some nerd on NPR the other day was talking about using peanut butter instead of tahini in hummus. Sounds weird, but maybe good?

Reem Tara said...

Dad uses tahini AS peanut butter. He puts it on bread and tops is with date syrup and it's like an Arabic peanut butter and jelly. It's so delicious. I'm not sure about reversing it, though. Peanut butter in hummus sounds kind of grody.