What do we have with pakoras?
What do we have with chowmein?
What do we have with other snacks?
Ah! I’m sorry, it should’ve been tomato ketchup. Our stores sell tons and tons of ketchup… and every household has enough stock of it. We do have pudina-ki-chutney and a few other chutneys like shredded mango sweet chutney but then we still want to add ketchup to whatever we’re eating. I’ve seen even Maggi noodles… or any other form of home-made noodles served with oodles an doodles of ketchup! And quite rightly, a critic remarked, ‘India is a ketchup republic!’
I was like anyone else and couldn’t think beyond ketchup… until we went to York in the mid-nineties and were confronted with a global choice of fascinating dips! Specky, my wife, said, ‘Let’s try a few of these.’ I said, ‘Why not?’ Thus begun our invasion of the planet of dips… and out of all the variations, we loved Hummus.
Hummus is a Middle eastern food dip or spread and is now preferred globally. It is high in iron and vitamin C, with folate and B6 in generous quantity. A dietician told me that the chick peas in it provide protein and serves as a complete protein when eaten with bread. Hummus is a fairly delicious accompaniment to fish, chicken, tortilla chips, crackers… and even our own pakoras!
My son, Pushkin, who is in London, informed me helpfully that Hummus is a part of daily meals in Israel. The Wikipedia informs me that ‘in May 2010, the Guinness World Record for the largest dish of hummus in the world returned to Lebanon. The winning dish, cooked by 300 cooks in the village of al-Fanar, near Beirut, weighed approximately 10450 kg (roughly 23000 lb), more than double the previous record set by 50 Israeli Arabs and Jews who cooked approximately 4100 kg (roughly 9000 lb) in January 2010 in the Arab-Israeli village of Abu Ghosh. According to local media, the recipe included 8 tons of boiled chick peas, 2 tons of tahini, 2 tons of lemon juice and 70 kg (154 lb) of olive oil.’
This dip is easy to prepare at home. All you need is:
1 Cup Kabuli Chana (Chickpeas)
4 Cloves of Lehsun (Garlic)
2 tbsp Lemon Juice
Half Cup Dahi (Curd)
1 tbsp Olive Oil
Chopped Parsley + Salt + Chilli powder
Preparing Hummus is quite simple:
Soak Kabuli Chana in water for 6-8 hours. Cover them all in water as they soak.
Pressure cook the soaked Kabuli Chana… cool… drain. Keep the drained liquid that is Chana Paani. It will be used later.
Blend the soaked Chana with oil, lemon juice, curd, garlic, salt and some chana paani. The paani helps you keep the consistency just needed. Your aim must be to get a smooth paste.
Place this paste in a serving plate and sprinkle some chopped parsley and chilli powder to give it the necessary tang and zing… and there you are with a dip that the world loves!
The recipe is also given in doodles below… loved drawing them on my iPad. Technology helps us be more creative, you see.
21 October 2013