April 20, 2020Target Healthy Eating
4 large cucumbers, peeled in alternate stripes, then cut on a bias (slant) into 4 or 5 pieces, depending on how large they are. Finally, scoop out the center to make a cup, into which, you will spoon the hummus. Make the height of each cucumber piece, 1.5 to 2 inches high, so it's a one or two bite-size piece.
2 (15.5-ounce) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
3 garlic cloves ground in mortar & pestle with 3 anchovy fillets (use anchovies as salt substitute, plus flavor)
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 pinches chili flakes
2 teaspoons smoked paprika, plus more for garnish
1 pinch black pepper
1 Tablespoons parsley, well chopped
1 Tablespoon fresh cilantro, well chopped
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for garnish
1/3 cup tahini (or substitute: almond butter, cashew butter, sesame oil)
Optional garnishes: roasted red bell peppers, roasted garlic, lemon slices, olives, mint or parsley sprigs, chopped tomato, olives
1. Do all chopping, grating, grinding, measuring, etc. first.
2. Wash & trim the cucumbers, then with a veggie peeler, make stripes on the outside of each cucumber.
3. Save 1/4 cup of the chickpea liquid from the canned chick peas. Set aside
4. Put the chickpeas in a colander and rinse well.
5. Combine the chickpeas, garlic & anchovies, lemon juice, cayenne, paprika, salt, pepper, parsley, cilantro, olive oil, and tahini in a bowl and stir to mix well.
6. Transfer the mixture to a food processor and process until well mixed.
7. Add the 1/4 cup of the chickpea canned liquid and process until smooth and almost fluffy. Add more liquid if you think it's necessary.
8. Scrape down the sides of the bowl once or twice. Transfer to a serving bowl and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. (The hummus can be made up to 3 days ahead and refrigerated. Return to room temperature before serving.)
9. After cutting each cucumber into 1.5 or 2 inch pieces, with a melon baller or grapefruit spoon, scoop out the inside of each piece, making a generous cup to hold the hummus. Be sure not to scoop out too close to the bottom and/or sides or you'll weaken the support.
10. Fill a piping bag or plastic bag with the hummus. If you don't have a piping bag, a small plastic bag works just as well, when you make a tiny cut on one corner of the filled bag. If you want to skip this step, simply fill each cucumber with hummus, with a slim spoon, like a grapefruit spoon.
11. Fill each cucumber piece with the hummus. Then garnish with whatever colorful veggie you have on hand, or simply use extra leaves of the parsley and/or cilantro.
12. Serve with a chilled white wine.
I love Philip Glass, whose musical director (conductor and pianist) happens to be one of my brothers-in law, Michael Reisman. Many people aren't used to minimalist compositions, however, be receptive and you may find it deeply relaxing and moving. One of my favorite minimalist composers is Arvo Part, from Estonia. Please give his beautiful piece a listen (below).
As I listen to the two versions of Spiegel im Spiegel, I am mourning three relatives of three of our employees who were caught by Covid-19 and have departed. We are so sad today.
From Our Table to Yours
Have a Great Week Everyone!