At home, I eat mostly vegan/vegetarian. With my Japanese friends, I’m sorta obliged to eat meat because I don’t want to offend them when they have placed much care and time in either taking me to a favorite restaurant or preparing me a special dish. There, I suck it up like a big girl and wash it down with a kale smoothie, later. I’m serious. However; I don’t mind eating locally hunted deer. This is because, in the countryside, there are SO many of them and they often get themselves killed or kill people through severe road accidents. They just run everywhere. Venison is pretty lean and has very little fat to it. I enjoy the taste. Last night, the boys cooked the girls (Aki and I) a delicious BBQ and we loved it. I made a platter featuring hummus (recipe HERE) organic veggies, nuts, blue-cheese, olives, crackers, prosciutto wrapped bread-sticks and chia-seed corn-chips. My super talented friend, Lifa (the Israeli wood-worker) made his beautiful wife a gorgeous grocery box and for the our BBQ, a chimney coal starter.
For more of his work check out his dope Instagram HERE.
Last night we ate Middle Eastern food. I made (anticlockwise), Persian stuffed peppers, curried couscous salad, hummus, babaganoush, and a garden salad with avocado and artichoke. Chips. Artichoke chips, sliced thin, rubbed between paper towels to drain excess liquid and baked, on high (no oil no seasoning just as is) in my toaster oven. So delicious! The small orange bowl is Indian-style pickled/chutnied yuzu (a Japanese citrus) made by Shogo-san.
Also, Lifa, my Israeli friend said my hummus was world-class which means I don’t need any more compliments for at least a year. Okay, go ahead, one more won’t hurt. For dessert, we had Persian Wife Cake. Which is basically a baklavaesque cake that I assigned a silly name.
The original Persian dolmeh is made by stuffing grape leaves but we also make them by filling eggplants, tomatoes, pumpkins and bell peppers. Dolmeh is delicious because it’s packed with so much flavor. As in literally. Packed to the rim with herbs and spices. Here is the recipe I used. If you’re vegetarian or vegan all you have to do is swap the mince for lentils and you’re all set. Enjoy!
After the hair straightener, the food processor has to be the world’s greatest invention. With the leftover beetroot from my chocolate cake recipe (strange, but true), tonight I whipped up some beet hummus with 0 effort. If you’re wondering of the health benefits, beetroot has been linked with bettering stamina, improving blood flow and lowering blood pressure. In addition, a highly popular food in Roman times, beetroot was used to treat fever, constipation, wounds, skin problems and was even utilised as an aphrodisiac! (Don’t get too excited.)
In a food processor, simply chuck together and blend:
1 cooked, peeled beetroot (roughly chopped) 1 can all natural chickpeas (drained and rinsed) 1/4 cup organic tahini juice of one lemon 2 tsp crushed garlic (2 cloves) salt and pepper
If the above history has inspired you to serve this pretty pink dip as an appetiser for your next hot date (for the health benefits, of course) then maybe omit the garlic.
Whenever I make hummus, I remember that hilarious scene in You Don’t Mess With The Zohan when Zohan’s dad takes a spoonful of hummus and stirs it into his cup of tea/coffee at the dinner table! Although that particular scene is an obvious exaggeration of Middle-Easteners’ relationship with hummus (unless there’s a flavour combination I’ve been missing?) nevertheless, in Israel, hummus is EVERYWHERE. In fact, that’s where I first fell in love with its creamy deliciousness. Today, I share with you my most simple and nutritious hummus recipe. It takes less than TWO minutes to make and is absolutely divine; a most typical I-accidently-ate-the-whole-thing dish.
WARNING: Consume at least 3-4 hours before human interaction as is very garlicky!
1 can of all-natural chickpeas (drained) 4 tbsp olive oil 2 tbsp organic tahini 2 tsp crushed garlic (2 cloves) juice of one lemon salt and pepper
a small handful of fresh parsley (optional)
sweet paprika (optional)
Mix all ingredients in a food processor.
To finish, top with a drizzle of olive oil.
If you’re feeling fancy, add some parsley and paprika too.
Enjoy with raw vegetables and/or healthy crackers or whatever it is your heart/stomach desires!