Tag Archives: vegan

Garbanzo Beans and Lemon Vinaigrette with Ground Flax Seeds

19 Jul

Garbanzo Beans and Lemon Vinaigrette with Ground Flax Seeds

I’ve been revising my salad dressings to be more nutritious and making the dressing stick to the salad ingredients instead of sinking to the bottom of the bowl after tossing the salad. The addition of the ground flax seeds thickens the dressing which helps to keep on the salad ingredients coated with the dressing.

As a relatively new vegan (almost 3 years) I’m always trying to include more plant protein in my food. Garbanzo beans and flax seeds both have more protein than other kinds of beans and seeds.

I prepared the salad dressing first and let it sit in the bowl while I prepared the following salad ingredients in a bowl. Following this order allows the flax seed to thicken the dressing.

Vegan Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette with Flax Seeds    ©2015 Afroditi Katsikiis

Vegan Salad ©2015 Afroditi Katsikis

Vegan Lemon Vinaigrette with Ground Flax seeds 

½     cup olive oil

3      Tbsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice

1       Tbsp. red wine vinegar

3      garlic cloves, finely diced

1      tsp. dried oregano

¼    tsp. fresh ground pepper

1.5  Tbsp. ground flax seeds

Put all the ingredients in a bowl and whip them up using a whisk. Let sit for 5 minutes before using it. Give it a few whisks just before putting on the salad. I used less than 1/8 cup dressing on this salad.


3  large leaves of romaine lettuce leaves torn into bite sized pieces, do NOT cut with a knife

1  large tomato cut into bite–sized pieces

3  thin slices of sweet onion, cut in half

1  cup of home cooked garbanzo beans

2  tablespoons of chopped parsley

Place all the ingredients in a bowl large enough to toss the salad with dressing. Two to three tablespoons was enough for me. The salad recipe makes enough for one person as a main dish but probably enough for two or three people as a side dish.

Half way through eating this salad I remembered half an avocado left in the fridge from yesterday. Too late to take another photo and if it’s not in the photo how can I put it in the salad recipe? These are other ingredients I wished I had available today: roasted sweet peppers, kalamata olives, sliced almonds, or possibly some fire roasted eggplant.  


 ©2015 afroditi katsikis

Cast Iron Skillet Vegan Muffin Cake

21 Jun
Vegan Applesauce Skillet Muffin-Cake

Vegan Applesauce Skillet Muffin-Cake ©2014 afroditi katsikis

Why bake muffins in a cast iron skillet?  When I get hungry for something baked, I figure out how to get around the obstacles that prevents me from baking! The obstacle: no working oven at my house and my barbecue is out of propane.

Several days ago, in my never-ending quest to not waste any food, I steamed some organic apples because they were no longer crisp and I was too lazy to make applesauce.  I also had some frozen bananas that had been ripening faster that I could eat;  I freeze them when they are full of brown spots.  I usually use them in pancakes, fruit smoothies or banana bread and needed to use them up before they became freeze-dried.

For the past several days I have been opening the fridge to see these steamed apples and wondering what was I thinking when I steamed these apples? I was craving something sweet and warm to eat – like a warm freshly baked nutritious applesauce muffin.

Just how was I going to do that on my electric stove top? I have made pan breads like pita bread, biscuits and pancakes in my fry pan. I like the idea of using less energy; cooking on top of a stove must be more efficient than using an oven.  During summer months, it’s too hot to bake inside but using a hooded propane barbecue outside will keep the added heat out of your house.

So I thought back to the early days of camping. If you’ve ever camped without a camp oven stove, then pancakes will be the closest you can get to a baked dessert. Experienced campers and hikers understand that you must make do with what you have and make what you have more than a one purpose item – who brings a muffin pan to make muffins once or twice on a camping trip? However, I can’t imagine going camping without a fry pan! So how was I going to make a coffee cake in a fry pan on top of stove? I put my campers thinking cap on!

As my craving for a muffin increased, I searched the web for and compared recipes for: cakes, biscuits, muffins, cupcakes, griddle cakes, brownies, coffee cakes, fry bread and pancake recipes. Even though some of these recipes used a fry pan, they all used an oven to bake the finished product.  I wanted a recipe that was more like a coffee cake, brownie or muffin cooked on top of the stove, not in an oven.

Naturally, I started experimenting and looked closely at the vegan pancake, muffin and biscuit recipes. I wanted a thick batter, one that would not burn on the bottom and leave the top ‘half-baked’ so I focused more on muffin recipes and decided to make big muffin in a fry pan.

Lately I’ve been lightly steaming veggies so decided I was going to turn my cast-iron fry pan into a steamer for my muffin-cake. I placed a short steamer rack that my slow cooker came with into clean cast-iron 9″ skillet.  Skillet must have a snug fitting lid and should not be flat; a flat lid will not allow the muffin cake to rise and will drip moisture on the muffin cake while it’s cooking.

Slice of Vegan Applesauce Muffin-Cake ©2014 afroditi katsikis

After assembling all the ingredients and needed utensils , the first thing to do is put the skillet on the stove with the short steamer rack in the bottom and grease the 8″ Pyrex pie dish.  It’s always best to make sure the skillet is heated before placing the Pyrex dish in the skillet. Heating the skillet is akin to pre-heating your oven. Heat about 1.5 cups of water in a sauce pan and NOT your skillet. The amount of water varies if you are using a skillet that is larger than the one I used.

While the water is heating up, mix all the dry ingredients together in a large bowl.

Dry Ingredients

2 cups flour

1/4 cup flax-seed meal

1 & 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon of cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon cloves

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

Put the skillet on the stove and set the burner to medium. Mix all the wet ingredients into a medium-sized bowl.

Wet Ingredients

3/4 cup cooked apples or applesauce

1/2 cup thawed frozen bananas, mashed

1/4 cup olive oil (and 1/2 teaspoon olive oil to grease the pie pan)

1/2 cup coconut milk, unsweetened

1/8 cup unsulphered molasses

~ optional ingredients ~
1/2 cup: raisins, or craisins (to add to the wet mixture)
1/4 cup granola as a topping before cooking
1/4 cup sliced almonds as a topping before cooking

By now the skillet should be adequately heated; turn it down to medium low heat (the settings you use for pancakes – level 2 or 3 depending on your stove). The skillet must be hot, after all, no one puts a cake into an oven that is not pre-heated.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until the dry ingredients are fully incorporated – Do NOT use a mixer; use a wooden spoon or spatula.

Place the batter into a greased Pyrex 8″ pie dish and add your selected topping(s).  Place it on the rack in the skillet with room to pour the water.  Pour the heated water into the skillet careful not to drip onto the batter.  Make sure not to put too much water in the skillet – it should be just slightly above the rack so when the water bubbles, it won’t bubble over into the batter. A lot of steam will rise and as soon as it subsides, center the Pyrex dish in the skillet using some long handled wooden spoons and put the lid on.

Cook/steam for about 30 minutes, until the Muffin Cake is browned; lightly tapping the center to see if it’s firm; if not, give it another 5 minutes. An inserted wooden toothpick in the center should come out clean.


Before you start making this recipe, determine how much water to pre-heat by assembling the fry pan, steamer rack and Pyrex pie dish.  Poor some water in the fry pan until it reaches just slightly above the bottom of the Pyrex dish. Pour the water into a measuring cup – so you know how much water to add to the skillet before cooking or just pre-heat the water as noted above.

If you don’t have applesauce, add 3/4 more coconut milk.

Blueberry Skillet Muffin-Cake

If you are going to use berries, put half of the batter into the Pyrex dish and spread it evenly. Add most of the berries evenly – I usually drop them one by one and slightly press them into the batter. Add the rest of the batter using spoonfuls and spread that evenly – do not leave a dome in the middle. Now add the rest of the berries over the top before you add another topping such as granola or sliced almonds.


The first time you make this, keep watch over it while it’s cooking – your stove may be hotter than mine. If you want to make this when camping, mix up all the dry ingredients and store it in a container. Regarding the molasses, pre-measure it and bring it along in a suitable container.



©2014 afroditi katsikis

Related articles


Blueberry Muffin or Pancakes

6 Oct
Vegan Blueberry Pancake

Vegan Blueberry Pancake – what it looks like in the skillet before I put the cover on it.

This is a new ‘muffin’ recipe I created that can be also be cooked in a skillet!  Out of necessity, because my oven is broken and I wanted more than just a regular pancake for breakfast, I figured out how to use a skillet to make these muffins.  The skillet must have a tight-fitting lid to keep the heat in.

Haven’t done this yet myself but I believe you can make this recipe when camping.  The first time I made this I used blueberries and the 2nd time I used craisins.  I don’t know why you can’t use whatever berries you have on hand if you don’t have blueberries. This recipe when cooked in a skillet, is enough for one very large pancake but can easily be doubled or tripled to make muffins or more pancakes.

Making Pancakes:


Dry ingredients 

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 cup white whole wheat flour

1/4 uncooked oatmeal (or granola)

1 tablespoon ground flax seeds (or ground flax meal)

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/8 tsp ground nutmeg

1/8 tsp ground cinnamon

1/8 tsp allspice

Wet ingredients

1/6 cup olive oil plus 1 tablespoon for the fry pan

1 small ripe banana, mashed (about 1/2 cup, the browner the better)

1/3 cup almond milk

1/8 cup blue agave

1/2 cup fresh blueberries (or any other berry, raisins or craisins)

topping optional: a couple of tablespoons of sliced almonds or chopped walnuts


Grease the frying pan.  The heat setting should be low – if your stove top burner has ratings of 1 – 9, use #2.  All burners put out different amounts of heat, so the first time you make this, keep watch over it while it cooks.

Combine flours, sugars, salt, baking powder, baking soda and spices. Combine mashed banana, almond milk, oil, agave in a separate bowl.  Add blueberries to liquid mixture.  Pour liquid mixture into the bowl of dry ingredients and mix until incorporated.

This is not the same consistency as regular pancakes that pour easily.  Place all of the mixture in the center of the fry-pan and smooth it over to be evenly thick.

All burners put out different amounts of heat, so the first time you make this, keep watch over it while it cooks; you can test the pancake with a toothpick and if it comes out clean, it is done.  On my electric stove, in 15 minutes the pancake is done.

Since it takes a long time for this pancake to cook, you have time to wash the bowls and utensils that were used and put away your unused ingredients.

Vegan Blueberry Muffins with sliced almond topping

Vegan Blueberry Muffins with sliced almond topping


The above list of ingredients will make 5 muffins – double or triple it to make more.

Before you start mixing your ingredients, pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C) and grease muffin cups or line with paper muffin liners.  Fill muffin cups 3/4 full.  Bake for 20 minutes in the oven, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

If you are going camping, mix the dry ingredients at home and store it in a re-useable container; please don’t use ziplock bags unless you plan on re-using the bag.

It’s not easy to get this pancake out of the skillet in one piece and it’s not great for your skillet if you use a knife to cut the pancake in the skillet. The best thing to use is a pizza pie cutter but do not press it very hard.

The pancake recipe makes one large pancake and if you are very hungry you might eat the whole thing but it may be enough for two people to share for breakfast along with some other fruit.

Blueberry Pancake

Blueberry Pancake

Hot Vegetable Soup

31 May

Hot Vegetable Soup Soups are supposed to be hot but in this case it’s more than hot considering that what’s making it very hot are the chilies in it.  I’ve made several different version of this soup and each were a big success.  This is a very easy and simple soup to make and is one of my staple soups now. Anything that comes in a can just never tastes right to me.

Many of the canned soups have ingredients that I avoid entirely and others  have too much salt. This soup does not have any salt at all!  The other reason I avoid canned soups is that, there is no way of knowing if GMO food products are used in them. I buy only organic and try to buy locally or grow my own.

The basic soup ingredients:

1 cup chopped fine white onions

1 cup thinly sliced carrots

1 cup chopped fine celery

5 garlic cloves smashed

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 tsp dried oregano flakes

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

1 tsp dried basil leaves

1 tsp ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon dried rubbed sage

1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary leaves

2 large bay leaves

4 roasted serrano chilies (whole not chopped)

3 large red potatoes

6 cups water

Put all the ingredients in a crock-pot, set it on high until it starts to bubble – timing depends on your crock-pot – then put it on low.  Let it simmer for a while until the potatoes are soft – again it depends on your crock-pot. I left it for another two hours and it was fine. This makes about 6 servings but then again it depends on your bowl size. I stored leftover soup  in the freezer in single size portions.  When I thawed one portion for lunch, the texture was fine.

Using this soup as a base, I have experimented with it quite often.

I have used the frozen soup portions to experiment. I’ve tried blending it and added some leftover steamed yam and a roasted jalapeno – it was even better. I find the sweet and hot flavors addicting!

Other times I’ve added a vegetable on hand after I brought the soup to a boil. These are the vegetables I liked the best: roasted tomatillos, green or wax beans, roma tomatoes, broccoli, spinach, kale, green cabbage, asparagus. Sometimes I use raw vegetables  which I throw in the simmering pot at least half an hour before serving – it depends on the vegetable. Other times, I’ve just tossed in leftover steamed, roasted or stir fried vegetable.  Basically what ever was left over or available in my kitchen at the time I was making soup, I tried.

Another option for this soup is to substitute the all the red potatoes for raw peeled sweet potatoes or yams. When I do this substitute I’ve added two more chilies. If you don’t have serrano chilies, try jalapeno – the serrano chilies are hotter and really offset the sweetness quite well.  Try it and let me know how you liked it. 

Pie Crust with Ground Flax Seeds

15 Jan

Pie Crust Rolled Out

I’m always trying to make a more nutritious pie crust since I love pies.  I’ve tried this same recipe on single crust apple pie and single crust mushroom pie and both times it worked beautifully!  I admit I haven’t tried it on a two crust pie yet so let me know if you try it – I’d love to hear about your results. Continue reading

Vegan Pinto Beans

30 Nov
Some Ingredients for Boletas

Some ingredients for pinto beans

While out shopping yesterday, I knew it was going to rain today so I made sure I had ingredients to make a small pot of pinto beans today.  I knew I had beans and garlic at home but didn’t have  a jalapeno pepper, cilantro or tortillas.

As a child I really didn’t care much for any beans but when I discovered Mexican food upon moving to Arizona, that all changed fast!  At first, I was weary of re-fried beans and when I tried them the first time, on the first night I spent in Tempe, I loved them!  I was also leery of hot chili peppers at that time but now, many of the commercially available hot sauces I can eat with a spoon – even the ones marked very hot!  So now I prefer using the hot chilies in my cooking as opposed to the chili sauces in a can or jar.

Keep in mind this is a small pot of beans so if you are making dinner for a large family, you might want to double or triple this recipe.  Please note that only one bay leaf is enough even for a large pot of beans!


1 cup dried pinto beans, washed

1 clove garlic, crushed

1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil

1 small bay leaf

1 jalapeno pepper


FIRST:  Soak the beans overnight. I usually soak the beans in a large jar filled with water.  The photo above has the jar I used with 1 cup of beans in it.  I fill it with water and place the jar on it’s side – make sure the cap is tightly secured.  Don’t leave the jar standing up because as the beans swell up, they will will pack themselves in the bottom and won’t swell up to their full potential.  If the jar is on it’s side, there is plenty of room for expansion.  If you don’t have a jar, use a bowl to soak the beans.

After soaking these beans overnight, place them all in a large pot with two more cups of water.  Bring the pot to a boil and then lower the burner to just above simmer.  Cover the pot with a tight fitting lid and check on them every half hour or so and stir them up to make sure nothing is sticking on the bottom and that there is enough liquid.  If you used a crock pot, you probably wouldn’t have to stir them up but a small quantity like this in a crock pot is not recommended (yes I tried it – the liquid burned off rapidly since crock pots are designed for a larger quantity).

Cooking time is about 4 hours.

So when they look like this photograph, remove and discard the bay leaf.  Remove the chili, smash it with a spatula and remove the skin and discard it; mince the green chili and seeds and return it to the cooking pot.

This is what the beans should look like when they are done.

Cooked Pintos – garlic, bay leaf and jalapeno pepper


1/4 cup chopped sweet onion

1 roma tomato, chopped (about 1/2 cup – a little more or less will be fine)

1/2 teaspoon cumin powder

Let this simmer for about 45 minutes.


1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro and let it simmer for another 15 minutes before serving.

Vegan Pinto Beans

Vegan Pinto Beans

Sweet Potato Biscuits

22 Nov Homemade Sweet Potato Biscuits

The softer, orange-fleshed variety of sweet po...

Last week I was looking for a vegan recipe for sweet potato pie and even though I used  ‘vegan’ as a key search word, I keep getting recipes that had egg in them?  [Sweet potatoes were priced real cheap last week so I bought a few pounds thinking about making a vegan sweet potato pie.]  I asked my friends for one but so far no one turned up a vegan recipe for sweet potato pie so I started looking at muffins and biscuits and found this recipe:

Pumpkin Patch Biscuits Recipe http://www.tasteofhome.com/Recipes/Pumpkin-Patch-Biscuits

I tried the recipe by replacing the milk with coconut milk and used extra virgin olive oil instead of butter.  Turned out real good but they did burn on the bottom – either my barbecue oven is too hot or the recipe was not right.   Re-made this recipe again today with great success and with a lot of modifications!  I think my recipe is much healthier too.

This recipe makes 6 biscuits perfect with a cup of tea in the afternoon – they could be served as dessert!  Keep in mind the less you handle this dough, the better they will turn out.  And the sooner you get this in the oven after the dry ingredients have been mixed with the wet ingredients, the better they will be.  Why?  This recipe uses baking soda; as soon as the baking soda gets wet, it starts working as a leavening.  The baking powder does not start its leavening power until it’s heated.  Using both makes the biscuits fluffier and light.  Be sure to do this recipe in the order as listed here for a light and yummy biscuit.  

Do this first: Turn your oven on to 375 degrees

* Prepare a cutting board:
1/8 cup            unbleached bread flour

* Spread the flour over a cutting board or pastry sheet and set aside

* Prepare the baking sheet:

½ teaspoon     olive oil to spread on the baking sheet (use a brush)

3 tablespoons cornmeal – Sprinkle the cornmeal on the baking sheet and set aside.

Brush both sides of a long non-serrated knife with olive oil and set aside.  

Mix these wet ingredients in a bowl and set aside:

¾ cup              steamed sweet potato, peeled and smashed up (using leftovers is fine)

¼ cup              molasses

1/3 cup            coconut milk  

Mix these dry ingredients together in a bowl:

1 & 1/3 cup     flour

2 tablespoons baking powder

½ teaspoon     sea salt

2 tablespoons protein powder

1 tablespoon   nutritional yeast

¼ cup              oatmeal (uncooked)

1/8 teaspoon   ground cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon   ground nutmeg

1/16 teaspoon ground mace

1/16 teaspoon ground allspice

optional: a pinch or two of ground cloves and or cardamom  

ADD to the Dry Ingredients:

¼ cup              olive oil by slowly drizzling the oil over the bowl of dry ingredients and mixing with a pastry wire mixer or pastry knife until the mixture looks like coarse bread crumbs.

Combine the wet and dry ingredients by placing scoops of the wet ingredients gently in the flour and turn mixture over with a large mixing spoon.  Do NOT whip them or stir vigorously.  Stop mixing when all the ingredients are incorporated and become one mass – should look like sticky drop cookie batter.

Place the entire mass of dough onto the floured cutting board and shape gently with a large spoon to form a rectangle you can cut into six pieces.  The dough should not be less than ¾ inch thick.  Use the oiled non-serrated knife to cut the biscuits into squares to make only 6 biscuits.  Wiggle the knife in place for a moment or two to help separate the biscuits from each other.  Gently lift each biscuit onto the baking sheet that is covered with cornmeal and place into the pre-heated oven.  Depending on how thick or thin they are, they should be done in 18-20 minutes – start checking them at about 15 minutes.


Homemade Sweet Potato Biscuits

Vegan Sweet Potato Biscuits made from scratch!

Lemony Asparagus and Potatoes

25 Mar

Leomony Asparagus and Potatoes
It’s been a while since I worked on my blog…among other things, I’ve been tackling making new recipes from old meat containing recipes. I was dreaming for some potatoes that my mom used to cook in her one pot chicken dinner…my revised ‘recipe’ is with asparagus and it is asparagus I picked from a wild patch not far from my house.

Since most of the time I only cook for one, this recipe makes about 2 portions.

Lemony Asparagus and Potatoes

1/8 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 large cloves garlic, crushed/chopped
1/8 tsp dried basil
1/8 tsp dried oregano
1/8 tsp dried thyme
a pinch dried ground sage
ground black pepper to taste
1 tsp soy sauce
juice of one very large lemon
2 or 3 potatoes cut into chunks (enough for 2 people)
¼ cup chopped onion.
Fresh Asparagus cut so they just fit laying across the top of the potatoes in the pot.
¼ cup vegetable broth or water

Place oil, garlic, onion, soy sauce, lemon juice and all spices in a small pot (with a tight fitting cover) and mix well. Add potatoes stir until all potatoes are coated before placing on the stove burner. Turn on heat and and add the vegetable broth a couple minutes later. Cook on a medium low heat with cover on tightly. Depending on the size chunks of potatoes – check the potatoes after 15-20 minutes and if they are almost done. When they need about 5 minutes or so, make sure there is a small bit of liquid in the bottom of the pot, if not pour a couple of tablespoons of vegetable broth or water before placing the cut asparagus across the top of the potatoes. In about 5 minutes the asparagus will be steamed to perfection.


COMING UP SOON: Spicy Tahini Sauce or dip

Garbanzo Bean Salad

13 Oct

Garbanzo beans are my favorite beans.  This was my lunch today but could easily be served as a salad with dinner.  Most of the time I’m the only one eating this and make it so that it will store well in the refrigerator so when I make it at home, I don’t add the tomatoes and cucumbers to the salad, I add them to my plate. 

If I’m making it for a potluck or serving it for guests, I add chopped tomatoes and or chopped cucumber and serve it chilled.  If I’m making it for me to be eaten over the next few days, I add the tomatoes and cucumbers just before I eat the salad. Left in the refrigerator with tomatoes make the tomatoes sort of melt and I don’t like them like that.  And the cucumbers, they get kind of rubbery after a night in the frig. 

What makes the salad when the tomatoes and cucumbers are added is their combination of textures with the spicy sauce.

Garbanzo Bean Salad

Place these ingredients in a bowl and toss ingredients:

2 cups cooked garbanzo beans

1 cup parsley chopped fine

1 cup chopped green onions (1 bunch)


1 cup chopped tomatoes

1 cup chopped cucumbers

Garlic Tahini Sauce

Place these ingredients in a bowl and mix well:

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

2 tbsp raw tahini

1 tbsp crushed garlic

juice of one lemon (3-4 tbsp juice)

½ tsp lemon zest

¼ tsp finely chopped fresh basil

¼ teaspoon finely chopped fresh oregano

8 – 12 twists of a pepper grinder set on fine

salt to taste

Mix the garlic tahini sauce ingredients until well incorporated and then pour it over the garbanzo beans and stir.

If you are good in the kitchen and can chop quickly, this should only take about 10 minutes to prepare.

Pita with Hummus

28 Sep
One of my favorite sandwiches

Tasty, inexpensive, healthy and vegan

Pita bread stuffed with romaine, hummus, red onion and yellow tomatoes from my garden. As you can see from the picture, this could be very easily put into a reusable container and taken to work for lunch. Very nutritious and vegan to boot. 

Earlier this week I made pizza from scratch and since I was going to use the barbeque as the oven, (didn’t want to heat my kitchen up with all that extra heat). I made double the amount of dough; used half for the pizza and made pita bread in the barbeque oven right after the pizza was taken out. While the pizza was in the barbeque oven I roasted some sweet red peppers to be used in sandwiches and salads. 

So what’s for lunch today? 

Pita bread stuffed with romaine, hummus, red onion and yellow tomatoes from my garden.  As you can see from the picture, this could be very easily put into a reusable container and taken to work for lunch.  Very delicious, nutritious and vegan to boot! 



1 15 oz can of organic garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed 

1/2 cup raw tahini 

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil 

1/4 teaspoon salt 

juice of one lemon 

1/4 teaspoon grated lemon peel 

pepper – 7 to 10 grinds of black pepper – more or less to your taste 

3-5 cloves fresh garlic smashed 

1/4 cup water or slightly more 

1/8 cup chopped fresh parsely 

Put the garlic, olive oil and tahini, salt, parsely, grated lemon peel and lemon juice in the blender and blend till the garlic is well incorporated in to the mix  (10-20 seconds),  Add half the garbanzo beans and puree in the blender for a minute before adding the rest of the garbanzo beans and the water; if it’s not blending smooth because it’s too thick, gradually add more water.  Blend until it’s smooth – can take a couple of minutes – depends on your blender.  Taste it and add more pepper salt or garlic to your liking.  

Since I like to spread this on vegetarian sandwiches, I oftentimes make this very garlicky!  It’s great as a dip for veggies, breads or crackers and makes every sandwich taste great!  Other ingredients to add to your hummus on a pita: roasted sweet peppers, olives, tabouleh, sliced roasted eggplant, pepperoncini’s. 

Coming up next: 

Pizza on the barbeque

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