Category Archives: Homous

Rose harissa spiced chunky homous…

I’ve been playing in my kitchen…nothing new there, I know… ๐Ÿ™‚ 

Last week I made up various fresh spice mixes including my rose harissa spice mix

I love it for how it smells as much for how it tastes, and the rose petals are just beautiful…

I will use it in all sorts of dishes and the first experiment was this one…a chunky homous…

Typically homous is made with chickpeas, tahini, garlic, lemon juice and maybe some water if necessary – this is my holy grail homous recipe – I made this version with chickpeas, tahini, my rose harissa spice mix and Verjus. I also kept it pretty rustic as opposed to blending it to completely smooth…(as homous means chickpeas in Arabic I think I can still call this homous ๐Ÿ˜‰ ) 

With the use of Verjus instead of lemon juice, plus the spice mix, it created a lovely warm, mellow flavour…

A nice experiment and always lovely using the dried rose petals ๐Ÿ™‚ 


Red and yellow and pink and green…

 I recently discovered a greengrocers in a village near me that pretty much sells every slightly ‘unusual’ fruit and vegetable you could wish for…it is packed with heavenly wonders…including samphire, artichokes, wild garlic, yellow courgettes, numerous types of tomatoes…so much lovely produce I can barely remember it all. Sadly it’s not locally grown produce, all those things couldn’t grow in the UK at the same time, and it’s not exactly cheap either, but nice for an occasional visit I think..I’ll stick with our wonderful central market for my usual supplies. 

I was excited to find some wild garlic though as I know it’s the season and it’s not sold anywhere else locally to me, and I haven’t been brave enough for forage for any for fear of poisoning myself! (Plus I don’t know where to start looking locally?!) I grabbed a handful of the lovely leaves, as well as a couple of yellow courgettes (squash) and a few other things…

After a VERY good wash, some of the wild garlic leaves went into some homous, and some became a pesto, whizzed up with almonds, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and some grated cheddar cheese..very nice with these sweet potato fries, using Chitra’s recipe, and sriracha homous for a Saturday tea.. 

When I saw how many stalks I had left (and registered how much they must have cost!) I decided to use them too and chopped them up for another days lunch.. 

This was a creation of bits and pieces really:
Chopped yellow courgette and wild garlic stems, cooked in coconut oil, with added cooked freekeh, and topped with roasted flaked almonds and dried barberries..yum! I didn’t add a dressing as I ate it with freshly made homous.. 

It’s such a pretty plateful, even if Spring isn’t happening outside your window, it can happen on your plate.. 

That’s what I think anyway ๐Ÿ™‚ 


Muhammara, sriracha red pepper homous & chermoula homous..

 I decided to revisit a few of my dips recently, it’s been a while since I’ve lived up to my ‘dip queen’ title! I make homous and dips weekly, but don’t always post them, I don’t want to bore anyone, but this little trio was so tasty with the roasted cauliflower, I thought I’d share it… 

I roasted the cauliflower in a drizzle of olive oil and towards the end of its cooking time, I threw over some za’atar, then put it back in the oven for a little while. That way the herbs, spices and sesame seeds in the za’atar wouldn’t burn, but would have long enough to add their flavour to the cauliflower. 

On the subject of’s great that it’s become such a popular vegetable and that people are discovering so many ways to cook with it, but at my local market it’s now become too expensive for them to even stock! Oh well, it forces me to experiment with other veg I guess…

Onto the muhammara.. 

This is a middle eastern dip made with roasted red peppers, walnuts and pomegranate molasses. I was asked to the describe the flavour recently and I struggled to do it justice; there’s the sweetness of the red peppers, plus the slight sourness of the lemon juice and molasses, with the lovely addition of the walnuts..impossible to find the words! You’ll have to try it ๐Ÿ™‚ 

I’ve made this before, it was on my blog in the very early days of its existence, this is my chance share it again, with better photos!!! 



2 large red peppers (I like using the long red ones)

2 cloves of garlic

1 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp paprika

1/4 – 1/2 tsp chilli powder (depending on your taste)

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 tsp baharat/Arabic 7 spice mix

1.5 cups of fresh walnuts

2 tbsp pomegranate molasses

Juice of half a lemon 

1/2 cup ground almonds (traditionally this would be breadcrumbs, but I like it with the ground almonds) 


Roast the peppers whole in the oven for 5-10 minutes, turning half way through, until you can feel that they are completely soft 

Remove them from the oven and place them in a plastic bag for a few minutes; this will make it easier to remove the skins

When they are cool enough to handle, remove the stalks, skins and seeds and put the flesh into your blender

Add all of the other ingredients and blend, but not too much, you want a grainy texture


Next, the red pepper and sriracha homous.. 

Whilst roasting the red peppers for the muhammara, I added in some more to make this..


2 large red peppers, roasted and skins & seeds removed as above 

150g drained cooked chickpeas

50g tahini

1 tsp paprika 

Juice of 1 lemon

2 cloves garlic

1-2 tbsp sriracha chilli sauce (to your taste) 


Whizz it all up in your blender 

And lastly the chermoula homous.. 

Having made up some standard homous as well as the red pepper one above, I stirred in some of my recently made chermoula; the two together really compliment each other and create a lovely dip. 

  A table filled with colour and flavour, perfect for any day of any week (as far as I’m concerned that is!).

 I also made Linda’s lovely Algerian bread ‘khobz tajine’ again to go with it all..

 A big fat ‘yum’ from me!! 

Ful medames…in several guises..

 Ful medames is an Egyptian dish, typically eaten for breakfast, made with fava beans, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, cumin, parsley and a bit of chilli. Basically, a whole lovely mix of wonderful flavours, all in one bowl. It is best eaten warm, on a bed of freshly made homous. HEAVENLY!

I made a batch recently, slightly differently from the typical recipe, but with the same tasty result. I used small split fava beans, which I soaked overnight then cooked in my pressure cooker, in water with a generous amount of olive oil. I’ll be honest, I overcooked them slightly, so I didn’t need to partake in the usual mashing of the beans as they were already pretty mushy! As such, when I added the cooked fava beans to their dressing, they soaked up the flavours perfectly. 

In a large bowl I mixed several tablespoons full of lemon juice with cumin powder, crushed garlic, salt and a touch of cayenne pepper. I added the cooked fava beans to this and stirred well then left it all to develop for a few hours. It was basically a big bowl of mushy yellowy beans so not very photogenic at this stage, it got prettier as I pimped it… 

With some of the mixture I added some steamed chunks of sweet potato and mashed them slightly with the ful medames – again, not wholly a pretty dish, but…OMG! the flavours!!!!!!! sweet potato and lemon juice go so well together, add in the garlic and cumin, and wow!!!! But then I also stirred in some tahini…that took it to a whole new level of amazing! 

This is my version of comfort food – grab a spoon and dig in! 

The addition of chopped coriander was my attempt at making it picturesque ๐Ÿ™‚ 

Another portion of my ful medames formed a part of this dish of wonder… 

At the bottom of the dish is my homemade homous, sprinkled with sumac; the next layer was some of my warm ful medames; topped with a dip made of peas, coriander, parsley, quark, goats cheese, cumin and lime juice. Does that not sound amazing?? It really was! 

I ate the last of my ful, with mashed sweet potato and topped with some of my falafel mixture.. 

An absolutely flavour overload!!

What do you think? Can I tempt you?? 

Making your recipes..

 Me cooking cauliflower is nothing new, you’ve seen me share many cauliflower recipes, and I roast cauliflower several times a week, but when I saw Lizs post including her pan roasted cauliflower steaks, I knew it would become a new way of cooking cauliflower in my kitchen. I’ve pan cooked cauliflower before, but not as whole ‘steaks’ like this and it was great – and so pretty! 

I enjoyed it with some lovely creamy homous – again, something I make regularly, but this time, I followed Jhuls ‘easy microwave homous’. This was a new method for me to try and involves peeling the chickpeas first, which was fine, except that the tin that I opened held the smallest (and most yellow!) chickpeas I have ever seen!!!! So of course, there was loads of them! But peel them I then microwave them briefly, which shows up just how many skins you’ve missed, and so the peeling continues…

  The method generates a lovely creamy dip and I’m so glad I tried it, and definely recommend it. 

I also served it with sprinkled sumac, toasted flaked almonds and chopped parsley. 

I also made a new spice mix recently; I follow Tanvee on Instagram and her lovely blog, and she told me about Kitchen King Masala, a spice mix used widely in India. You know me, I always like a new spice mix, and I loved making this one too..

 All ready to toast..

I ground this all up and have been using it ever since ๐Ÿ™‚ 

I have also made the Cajun spice mix from Mollies blog, which the blogs have liked on their chicken and in their quesadillas. And Andreas honey chipotle chicken, another winner with the boys – and eaten far too quickly for me to photograph. Trupti’s spinach dal was also very tasty – but again, no photo, sorry!! Visit Trupti’s blog for the details. 

And finally…more stuffed baby aubergines, this time following Prachi’s recipe..I experimented with purple baby aubergines and little green round Thai aubergines.. 

 Going in


 Coming out (they never look as pretty but they sure taste good!) 

 Such great flavours ๐Ÿ™‚  

Pictured here with some of an aubergine quinoa bake I recently devised (more about soon). 

I do love making so many of your recipes – thank you for the inspiration x 

Pimp Your Veg part 8: dips, dips, and more dips! (perfect for using up leftover vegetables)ย 

ย Yes, it had to be done didn’t it? I’ve been called the ‘dip queen’ so often that I couldn’t ignore one of my fundamental kitchen practices during this series…I have made dips with sweet potato, butternut squash, aubergines, shallots, garlic, cauliflower, potato, tomato, spinach, coriander, parsley, parsnips, sprouts, pumpkin, courgettes/zucchini, peas, endemame beans, avocado, beetroot, swede/rutabaga, carrots…basically, no vegetable is ever safe from from being whizzed up in a blender with various other ingredients in my kitchen and being turned into a super tasty dip!

It’s also another great way to use up leftover vegetables, cooked or uncooked; and another great way to get more people eating vegetables…its a win win!

There are more examples of dips below, and even more in my recipe index if you’d like more inspiration.

My simple go to method is to whizz up my chosen vegetables with tahini, lemon juice and sometimes some water, if necessary, to loosen the mixture.

Alternatively, you could use peanut butter or another nut butter, plain yoghurt or soft cheese, cashew cream or hemp seed cream (example below), experiment with lime juice or vinegars, it all depends on your tastes. The key thing is to give it a go.

You can roast, steam, boil or cook your veggies however you want to make dips by design, or use up leftovers. Alternatively, try using raw vegetables and see what you think.

Adding spices or herbs is a definite for making a real difference to the flavour. Vegetables roasted with spices make great dips.

Get your blender out and have a go!

Sweet potato (link above)

Spiced roasted potato

Roasted tomato and garlic


Swede (rutabaga) and carrot – basically roasted root vegetables blended with tahini and lemon juice

Homous and harissa – a blend of things I had left over

Chermoula and tahini sauce – yum! Again, I was using things up

Fava bean and salad

Wild garlic pesto

Roasted carrot, red onion and garlic – this is a really favourite: beautiful roasted carrots, red onion and garlic whizzed up with some homous – so good!

Chimichurri pea and quark

Hemp seeds and parsley

Green sauce

You may find this recipe of use as a base for your dips: my homous holy grail,ย and tahini sauce is a blend of 1 part tahini plus 2 parts water plus the juice of 1-2 lemons depending on taste. You can make it thicker or thinner by controlling the amount of water you add.

I hope you like my suggestions ๐Ÿ™‚

I’m going to share this over at Fiesta Friday today in case anyone needs some ideas for using up leftover vegetables from their Thanksgiving Day meal xx

Fava bean and tahini chunky dip with my pastesensation..

I have read and researched many recipes recently for Middle Eastern ‘foul mudammas’ dishes and ‘fattet homous’ dishes.

Foul is a dish typically made with cooked fava beans (dried broad beans), in a sauce of lemon juice, olive oil, garlic and cumin, often then topped with chopped tomatoes, onion and parsley. The joy is in the gorgeous sauce ๐Ÿ™‚

Fattet is sometimes described as a ‘deconstructed homous’; the dish is literally made up of homous ingredients, cooked chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice, garlic, all mixed together, heated, and spooned over crispy toasted pieces of Arabic bread, and often topped with chopped parsley and pine nuts. And it is GOOD!!! Eaten warm it is glorious moreish comfort food, often eaten for breakfast, but fabulous at any time. 

I’m sure you will see both feature on here very soon…this dish therefore was borne of a bit of both..

The bowl above includes cooked split fava beans (I soaked and cooked these myself in my little pressure cooker and I find that the peeled and split beans work best for me) mixed with tahini, lemon juice, garlic, cumin, chopped tomatoes and parsley; I just put the bits together and let it take shape and then ate it cold on its own and alongside other elements. 

I then threw in some of my leftover Moroccan inspired paste and gave it a new dimension..

  And it worked very very well!! So much flavour, layers and layers of it..a whole new piece of paradise on my plate!

  Apologies for the lack of detailed recipe but hopefully this still shares some ideas and inspiration and might make you chuck a few different things together this weekend?  

And finally I am joining Fiesta Friday this weekend, for the first time in weeks! Where did that time go?? Come and join the party, is week co hosted by the lovely Judi and Stef and feast your eyes on the wonderful dishes that everyone makes..happy weekend! 

See you tomorrow with some sweet potato onion bhaji breads…:)