HOMEMADE HUMMUS (and a little spiel on food cans)

I am somewhat addicted to hummus. It’s great as a starter or party finger food with carrot, cucumber and celery sticks. I love it on toast with sliced tomatoes, a dribble of olive oil, salt and pepper. A perfect light lunch!

Homemade hummus tastes slightly different from shop-bought hummus in little plastic pots. To avoid single-use plastic packaging for the recipe below, your best option would be to source unpackaged dried chickpeas. Since this is difficult for the majority of us in the UK, the recipe is made with off-the-shelf chickpeas in cans. Nearly all food and drink cans are lined with a plastic coating but I cannot be certain that all chickpea cans are. Food cans in the UK are made from steel or aluminium from over 50% recycled material and are fully recyclable. The majority are lined with epoxy resins to prevent acidic food like tomatoes from reacting with the metal. A building block of epoxy resin is Bisphenol A (BPA) which is a controversial ingredient in plastic products. If we bear in mind the environmental impact of industrial packaging of any kind, unpackaged dried chickpeas would be the best option for the environment and well worth sourcing if you use them as regularly as I do. I am fortunate that I am able to buy unpackaged chickpeas, spices and olive oil.

I make hummus in a food processor and keep it in the fridge for a few days. You could choose all organic ingredients. Tahini (sesame seed paste in glass jars) is optional but really helps with that authentic hummus taste. I recommend using Tahini ‘light’ which is less intense.

  • 400g canned chickpeas, reserve a few for decoration
  • 6-8 tbsp of the water or brine from the can
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 2 tbsp tahini (optional)
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika

Combine all the ingredients in a food processor and blend to a creamy purée. Add more lemon juice, garlic, cumin or salt to taste. Drizzle with olive oil, scatter with the reserved chickpeas and sprinkle with paprika. Enjoy!

An here is another very delicious hummus recipe: http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/hummus_80249

Further reading:

How cans are made in the UK today:
http://www.cannedfood.co.uk/how-cans-are-made-today/

About Bisphenol A:
http://www.bisphenol-a.org/human/epoxycan.html

Why does my tin can have a plastic liner and is it bad for me?
http://plasticisrubbish.com/2010/10/08/why-does-my-tin-can-have-a-plastic-liner-and-it-it-bad-for-me/

Unpackaged food:
Whole Food Market UK
Harvest Natual Food, Bath and Bristol
Totnes Zero Waste shop
Farmers markets, Asian food markets, healthfood shops

Packed lunch with homemade hummus and homegrown sprouts

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