People say I make a pretty good hummus so I’m going to throw my basic recipe out there.
You’re going to need a food processor or blender. I prefer the KitchenAid 3.5 cup model for the price and the drip feed funnel on the lid.
Ingredient-wise you’ll need: – 1, 15oz. can of chickpeas (garbanzo beans) [drain and save liquid] – 4-5 Garlic cloves – 2-3T. Tahini – 2-3T. Olive Oil – 2T. of the saved liquid from the beans (known as Aquafaba) – 1/2 Lemon worth of juice – 1/4 Lemon worth of zest – 1t. Salt – 1/2t. Paprika – 1/4t. Pepper, fresh ground
The instructions are pretty straight forward. Combine ingredients in your food processor and puree. Check the consistency and if it’s not up to your standards add (using the drip funnel if it’s on your food processor) about 1/2t. of the bean liquid (aquafaba) and puree. Repeat this process until the consistency is at your preferred density.
Tahini is the ingredient that makes hummus what it is. Don’t be like some friends of mine who wouldn’t use it or else you’ll end up, like they do, with a bland bean paste.
Changing the flavor and style is easy enough. Here are some quick edits: – Use 6-7 roasted garlic instead of raw. – Use a roasted red pepper, omit aquafaba unless adjusting consistency, and use only 1T. of olive oil. – Add about 2T. of sun-dried tomatoes, omitting aquafaba if they’re oil-packed. – Sub 2 cloves of garlic with 1 green onion
Experiment with whatever you like to make something new!
This is a pretty simple and straightforward entry. But here are my picks for tools that any cook should own and that which will make all your meals easier and better prepared. I’d consider them the first step to leveling up your cooking beyond boxed meals.
A probe thermometer.
This you can use to precisely manage temperatures of things in the oven. When cooking a steak in the oven you can make sure it comes out exactly when it’s ready.
A digital scale
Digital/Analog. Whatever. Just having a scale allows you to more precisely manage your ingredients and your food. The minimal amount of math required to manage flavor is made easier with the metric system.
An immersion blender
Finally. You can whip together the ideal scrambled eggs. That homemade dressing will never stop being a colloid.
An infrared thermometer
There’s nothing more annoying than putting an egg in a pan and realizing the pan isn’t hot enough. Now you have to wait and your perfect yolk is not to be. This stops that. This allows you to take easy spot temperatures. This doubles as a toy for the cat.
I haven’t purchased a loaf of bread in years and I have been making my own with a sourdough starter that I decided to create and maintain. Overall it’s criminally easy and the products that you can make from a sourdough starter are infinitely better in taste and health.
“…mix a small amount of flour and water in a bowl, a little more flour than water, and stir until smooth. Add a little more water or flour as necessary to obtain a batter that is liquid and pourable, yet thick enough to cling to the spoon.”
This one is very simple. Perfect for a chicken salad with some chow mein noodles or a stir fry.
Alternately you can use it as the dressing for an asian-style coleslaw (see also: coming soon)
What you’ll need:
1/4 C. Rice or white wine Vinegar
1/3 C. Vegetable Oil
2 t. Soy Sauce
1 t. Garlic (minced)
1 t. Ginger (grated)
A whisk or stick blender
Add the ingredients together and blend until the mixture has emulsified.
A stick blender (or immersion blender) makes this immensely easier. But if all you have is a whisk I would suggest rolling it between your two palms as if you were making snakes out of clay to get the most whisk for your energy.
These chicken enchiladas are something that my mother has made for years and I’ve only slightly changed to align with my adult tastes. But they are easy enough and tame enough that even the most picky eaters will be pleased with your effort and you’ll not break a sweat.
Here’s what you’ll need:
A large casserole dish (8″ x 12″-ish)
A skillet and butter
1 package of at least ten ‘burrito’ sized tortillas
1 10oz. can of chicken breast
1 10.5oz. can of cream of chicken soup
18oz sour cream
1 7oz. can of green diced green chiles (get the smaller can if your brood is ultra sensitive to the slightest spice)