I was not feeling in top form today, so I was schlepping around the cabin late morning in my leopard-print robe (as one does) when the doorbell rang. Since we’re in the year of the plague, I expected it to be the mail carrier, who is used to seeing me in all states of undress, so I blithely answered the door. It was not Lucas-the-mailman.
It was, however, our lovely (and always put-together) neighbour with handfuls of fresh produce she’d just picked from her garden!
Since it’s nice to eat fresh produce on the same day, I decided to serve the peas with hummus, veg, olives, and freshly made pitas for a preprandial snack.
Though the drinks you see in the background look like wholesome glasses of freshly squeezed orange juice, they are not! They are mango margaritas James whipped up from some overly ripe mangos and Dr. P’s Sugarshine (in place of tequila). All was delicious!
I’ve been making hummus in the Instant Pot these days because we have it almost every day when we break our fast at around four in the afternoon. It’s honestly almost as quick to make hummus from dried chickpeas as it is to make it from canned since I don’t bother to soak the chickpeas. I’ve found that even the most tenacious legumes–like chickpeas–don’t really need soaking, especially if you cook them in the Instant Pot. Here’s what the folks at Rancho Gordo say about soaking:
“Soaking the beans will speed up the cooking but you have to wait to do it so how much time are you really saving? We often soak in the morning and cook the beans in the afternoon for dinner but we also just cook the beans and wait for them to be done. Most employees here start as avid soakers and end up just cooking without soaking.”
Here’s my method!
Instant Pot Hummus
- 1 cup dried chickpeas
- 6(ish) cloves of garlic
- 1-2 heaping TBS tahini (I just use a big soup spoon full of this stuff)
- 6 capfuls of lemon juice (I make it so often that I’m too lazy to get out the tablespoon)
- 1 tsp Better Than Bouillon Vegetable Base (if you don’t have this, just add some salt)
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp smoked paprika (optional, but gives it a nice smokey flavour)
- 1/2 tsp cayenne (optional, but gives it a bit of heat)
- vegetable broth (you decide how much)
- freshly ground pepper
- salt to taste
Add the dried chickpeas to the Instant Pot with four or five cups of water and a little salt. Set for forty-five minutes. Once the chickpeas are done, do a quick release of the Instant Pot, drain them, and run them under cool water until they are cool. Add them to the food processor with the rest of the ingredients and blend.
As I’ve mentioned a thousand times, the trick to good hummus is that you have to blend the hell out of it. Turn the blender on and go do your shopping.
Well, not quite, but you want it SMOOTH, so you need to leave that blender on forever. Once it’s super smooth, check the texture: if you like your hummus thinner (which I do), add a bit more broth until it’s the consistency you like. Then blend it like hell again. Check it for saltiness and add more salt if you need to!
As for the strawberries and romaine, I decided to make a salad similar to this one.
I’m still not satisfied with my tofu feta though, so I decided to try an almond flour version. I found this recipe, which I adapted a bit, by replacing the olive oil with tahini, and the water with the brine from kalama olives. Oh, and rather than coating it with olive oil, I just used my little oil spritzer a couple of times over the top. IT IS SO GOOD!
Here is the adapted recipe:
Almond Feta Cheez
- 1 cup almond flour
- 2 TBS nutritional yeast
- 1.5 TBS lemon juice
- 1 TBS tahini
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 cup kalamata olive brine
Mix all the ingredients together and press into a 1/2-inch-thick round on parchment paper; spritz with a bit of olive oil. Bake at 400 degrees for eight minutes.
The top will not look brown, but flip it over when you remove it from the oven. It should be a nice and crispy looking!
And here is our beautiful dinner salad!
And the song of the day is The 1975’s “Paris.” Bob sent me a link to this gorgeous song last week…