My twin Anna and I shared a birthday recently! We’re right old time-jockeys now, eating up our early thirties. Anna said we’re middle-aged. I said NO!!! WE’RE STILL YOUNG, just old enough to know better. I think she was a little disappointed not to be middle-aged (I know, right?!). I said we’ve got that to look forward to my dear. Only I hate terms like middle-aged, no-one ever says it without feeling depressed, it’s like some kind of misery-spreading weapon people use. Old is fine, young is fine, in the middle-ish-area is just living, getting older, yes, gaining, changing, losing, hurting, growing, taking, giving, laughing, learning, yearning. L I V I N G . Life is as long as it is, there are no givens.
I want to get over this fear of aging and move on!
You only have one body you’ve got to love it. Check out my post on loving yourself xx
Anna’s so funny, she’s great to have around (unless you’re trying to tell her to do something she doesn’t want to do when you get the scary eyeball!). She’s so positive and has so much love for life despite all the difficulties life throws at her. Like me it has made her stronger. She has the busiest schedule of anyone I know too. Between scrabble club, band practice, bowls, art therapy sessions, yoga, a serious Midsummer Murders habit (we’re talking a SERIOUSLY gruesome) she has time to dream up wonderful recipe ideas (involving a lot of mascarpone I have to say, which I can’t share being vegan, but also a lot of gooseberry and cooking apple combos and some quite astounding lateral thinking). We’re dreaming up lots of vegan ice-cream recipes and even have plans to release an e-book (watch this cyber space….) Now we can be the n/ice-cream twins instead of the asthma twins, I said. Anna looked crestfallen. Well, we are the asthma twins, she said, sounding matter of fact and a little cross. When we were little we were in a gang of two. I was Big Toe, she was Little Toe ♥
Food is something that especially in recent years, Anna and I love to share. We talk a lot on the phone about our ideas, and about what we’e having for dinner. We both love to cook and eat, and to dream of what we could eat, and new things to concoct. We both need help in life because of our disabilities, Anna has learning difficulties. She has a team of carers and is on the whole okay with people helping and doing things for her, me not so much, I tend to try to do everything and to push my hands too far. Anyway, we had hatched various plans of what we could make when we met up on our birthday. We love meals with different dishes to dip into, and it was natural to make a hummus, packed full of taste and goodness, beautiful to share and easy and rewarding to make. I’m a total hummus fiend too, I’ve eaten so much of it in my life it’s quite unbelievable. I love everything about it, it’s so full of flavour, protein, great fat and (of course) lemon. You can have it with bread, leavened or unleavened, toast, chips (try these beauties xx), or with carrot and celery sticks for a high alkaline low carb option, which I do a lot. And you can mix up the chickpeas with other beans. We used flageolet beans and chickpeas when we made it together, which go really well, flageolet beans are so smooth and firm, but you can just use chickpeas if you like. And we used more sweet potato that time too, which was lovely. I’ve shared in the recipe below my favourite balance of ingredients, but hummus is so versatile. It’s gorgeous. Anything so lemony is alright by me ♥
Sweet potato is such a beautiful food, so nutritious and vibrant. It goes so well with hummus. Even those for whom the taste of a sweet potato by itself is too sweet to be savoury will love it in this lightly spiced and fragrant dip. I love cooking with these ingredients, they’re so uplifting. Cooking should be a pleasure. I get such a kick out of the ingredients I use, they’re nature’s gifts for us to grow from and enjoy ♥
- Chickpeas, approx 2 cups, or a mixture of flageolet beans and chickpeas
- 4/5 - 1 cup of cooked sweet potato
- 4 tbsp tahini
- 1 1/4 tsp finely ground black pepper (more if coarse)
- 1 1/2 tsp ground coriander
- 1 1/2 heaped tsp ground cumin
- 3/4 tsp mixed spice
- 2 large cloves of garlic
- 5 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 5 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 1/2 cups fresh coriander
- 1/2 tsp salt, to taste
- Roasted pine nuts (optional)
Heat a 1 tbsp olive oil and lightly toast the spices, being careful not to burn. Add all the ingredients bar 1/4 cup of coriander leaf and the pine nuts to a blender and blend until smooth.
Finely chop the coriander and toast the pine nuts and garnish, adding a drizzle of good cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil and tahini is optional but extra special.
The hummus is best after half an hour or so when the flavours really absorb. Keep in the fridge for a few days only. Refresh with lemon.
I usually use soaked and freshly cooked chickpeas as they taste a lot better and are healthier, but I use canned too if I need to.
For best results freshly grind your spices, I love my electronic grinder!
I’ve been listening to… M.I.A. Bad Girls
I’ve been watching… Star Wars
I’ve been reading… Kazu Ishiguro Remains of the Day
P.S. TWIN POWER!!