Two summers ago, I got a fever. And the only prescription was more hummus. I had just discovered the wonder of quick, easy, delicious homemade hummus, which cost me a mere $1.30 for five servings, and I got a little excited. I went a little overboard. I ate hummus every weekday for lunch for a month straight.
Hummus on a sandwich; hummus on a salad; hummus as a snack with carrots, cucumbers, or pita bread for dipping; hummus on a spoon. It was crazy. And incredibly creamy, easy-to-make, flavorful, healthy, and cost-effective. It kept me full but energized. Summer 2009 was most definitely the Summer of Hummus.
This Greek salad with lamb, tsatsiki (cucumber-yogurt sauce), and oven-baked cumin pita chips is not only healthy, but also the fastest, easiest, most delicious dinner ever – especially if you had a figurative ton of lamb’s meat left over from, oh, I don’t know, last week’s roasted leg of lamb, perhaps?
Last week’s roasted leg of lamb was delicious enough to finish in one sitting, had it not contained enough meat to feed an entire family or had we actually been a family of six and not a mere twosome. But at the meal’s end, I was left with approximately 2/3 of the original amount of lamb. Knowing that I had already sated my lamb cravings for the week, I set about dicing the meat. And then I did something that some of you will find horrific: I froze the diced meat.
Ordinarily, I would never have frozen the cooked meat of a succulently home-roasted leg of lamb (or any other already-cooked meat, really) … except chili. (But real chili takes a very long time, is meant for large batches, and holds up for quite a few months in the freezer – upon defrosting, it tastes even better, in fact.) But due to the outrageous amount of lamb already consumed and massive amount of lamb still to-be-consumed, there were only three options: (more…)
Couscous: the food so nice, they named it twice! So I can only imagine how many times over they might have named it had they added a little cocoa powder. For those I almost lost on that cocoa powder suggestion, don’t worry – the cocoa flavor is on the back end , not up-front, in-your-face chocolate like these.
Rather, a bite tastes something like this: the tart-yet-sweetness of cherries, followed by a hint of bright citrus from the orange zest, balanced against the delicate buttery-nutty flavor of pistachios, and finally the subtle yet discernibly nutty chocolateyness of unsweetened cocoa-powder flavoring the couscous.
Beyond the interesting and delicious flavors involved, this dish has an amazing texture – from the chewiness of the cherries to the crunch of pistachios, to the spongy grains of couscous. (more…)