July 31, 2011

Hummus - Yummy Garbanzo Bean Dip

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And the happiest thing is that it is so simple, this creamy dish of satisfyingly bright and earthy flavours full of the mystery of the orient.  It is a distinct taste that you will remember fondly. Finished and delightfully swirled in its pretty dish, a dusting of bright red paprika on top with a final splash of fruity virgin olive oil, it always proves irresistible to passers-by who, grabbing bread, pita, crackers or even freshly made chapatis, dive in for a scoop after scoop after scoop.

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I used to drag out my blender from its hiding place in my tiny, tiny little kitchen (you would have to see it to believe how small it is) in order to make the hummus.  And then I got nostalgic and purchased a large coconut wood (I think) mortar and pestle when we were in Thailand and managed to lug that heavy thing all the back to Hong Kong only to find it very hard to pestle garbanzo beans without them popping out all over the place.  And then I discovered the immersion blender (I know, a bit late) and it's so amazing and now I use it all the time.

Since it is available in Hong Kong nowadays (things sure have changed!) look for organic garbanzo beans to use.  The flavour will be a much more clear bean flavour since there isn't all the other gunk in there to confuse the taste.

Hummus Recipe
(Prep time: 15 mins)


2 cans organic garbanzo bean(also known as chickpeas)
2 garlic cloves, smashed
2 tbsp Tahini ( which is sesame oil, don't get the really cheap ones which usually suffer from flavor deprivation)
1/2 cup reserved garbanzo bean liquid from can
Juice of 1 1/2 lemon (or more to taste)
1 tsp cumin to taste
1 1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp paprika


In large mixing bowl add garbanzo beans, garlic, tahini and 1/4 cup reserved garbanzo liquid and blend.  Add the lemon juice and taste.  If more tanginess is desired add more lemon juice.  Add cumin to taste.  For the final texture, it can be smooth to creamy and smooth, just adjust to your preference by adding more reserved garbanzo liquid. Using spatula, pack hummus into bowl, giving it a subtle swirl or well at the top.  Sprinkle with paprika and splash generously with virgin olive oil.

This goes great with homemade Salsa and Chapatis (strange combo, I know: Middle Eastern, Mexican and Indian, but hey, why not?  We're in Hong Kong after all.  It all made for a grand finger food night, the baby loved it (great protein source) and it tasted yummus!)

More Veggies Delights at The Hong Kong Cookery:

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Cucumbers, japanese, pickled, quick pickles, recipe, salt, shiozuke, vegetablesQuick Salt Pickled Cucumbers

chinese, fermented, lacto fermentation, pickled chilies, Pickled Peppers, recipe, 泡椒, 自製Chinese Pickled Peppers 自製泡椒


July 19, 2011

Pickled Mackerel - Fish in a Jar

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In Hong Kong people don't like the mackerel. "Ah ya, too oily!" I overhear the ladies at the wet market cackle noisily amongst themselves. So whenever fresh mackerel appear they linger long atop the wet market's makeshift styrofoam tables even though they are priced dirt cheap. Shining fresh fish rows, glittering their silver gray stripes under hanging bare bulbs.