Monday, January 11, 2021

BEST SUPERMARKET HUMMUS 2020 - HOLY HUMMUS!






There's a new king in supermarket Hummus in the US and it's... ( Drum roll) ... Holy Hummus.
WOWA WEEWA it is good. 
I bought it randomly in the supermarket in LA, one day when they ran out of the other bigger brands I tend to buy.
There's nothing very special or inviting in their packaging.  It looks like all the other generic supermarket Hummus brands -but wait till you taste it...
AAAAMAZING!

They have 4 flavors: Homestyle Hummus with olive oil, Jersualem with Tehina , Nazareth and Classic.
They're all really good. 
The best in my opinion is their Homestyle Hummus which has lots of chickpeas and feels coarse and fresh like restaurant hummus in the middle east.

Their second best in my opinion is Jerusalem Hummus which is much creamier and also excellent.

Their last 2 flavors are Nazarath and Classic. Two flavors that are still really good and no one will ever complain about - well no one except those that already tasted their Homestyle Hummus.

 The main difference between the four Hummus isn't that much the taste but rather  the texture.  While the Homestyle seems to be the coarsest, the Nazareth somewhat coarse and the Classic the creamiest.
For those who love creamy rather than coarse - you will find everything you are looking for in the Classic.



TASTE:
The hardest thing in making supermarket hummus is figuring out how to ensure it doesn't have that "plastic" aftertaste of preservatives and other ingredients which make it feel somewhat generic.
Some of the Hummus companies place a lot of garlic or garlic flavoring that hides the fake aftertaste, 
while others simply place more focus on texture than on taste.

To get additional flavors that taste a bit different and don't have the same aftertaste and garliccy flavor - some larger supermarket chains have started experimenting in recent years in distributing creamed veggies made from other ingredients not chickpeas yet still call it Hummus - even thought hummus based on my understanding has to be made from chickpeas.
It's like calling a butter made from Cauliflower - PEANUT BUTTER - knowing people prefer butter made from peanuts over butter made from Cauliflower.

Maybe Cauliflower cream is interesting - but peanut butter should be made from peanuts or it's false advertising.
Hummus is made from Hummus - i.e. chickpeas in Arabic and Hebrew. 

Because of Covid 19 - a lot of restaurants have closed and many people prefer buying supermarket hummus that feels safer and has less potential for Covid 19.
That's why it's super important to choose the right one.

It seems that Holy Hummus is still a small label and isn't available in many supermarkets and even in the ones it is available it tends to run out very quick as it's possible the word on the street has already spread about the uniqueness of this tasty hummus.

I purchased this hummus first time at the Israeli supermarket - Samy Makolet on Fairfax blvd in Los Angeles, CA . Sammy Makolet is one of the most famous specializing Israeli supermarkets and I understood it's also sold in the other famous Israeli supermarkets in LA.

Samy Makolet also tend to run out of it quite fast and I had to follow up to figure out when they get more supply to purchase more of it. 
From the Holy Hummus website it seems it's a NY based company so they might already be available to purchase all over the nation or at least in large cities from LA to NY.

Because of Covid 19 - I couldn't do blind tests with friends - but I did recommend they all purchase it and let me know their thoughts and they did - and they were all blown away by the taste that is quite unique for a supermarket hummus.

Bottom line - I hope with Covid 19 and the fact many people aren't shopping in smaller supermarkets only buying from large retailers like Costco, Amazon, Whole Food, Krogers etc ... that people will still discover this new company that is still mostly sold in smaller supermarkets and is mostly sold out.
Unlike the large Hummus brands - that tend to occupy the majority of the Hummus Fridge even in smaller specialized markets - this Hummus tends to hide in the corner.
If not for Covid and shortage of supplies - I probably would've never discovered this brand myself and stuck to the large brands I know.

I also hope this brand slowly make their way into the larger retail chains - cause their taste - is ready for the mainstream spotlight .
But as they make it to the larger retailers - I hope they will not compromise their unique and unbelievable flavor that tastes as good as many restaurants and will help educate Americans to the real taste of Middle Eastern Hummus.

Their website:
http://www.holyhummus.com/

Enjoy...


BEST HUMMUS IN LOS ANGELES 2020 - DR. SANDWHICH





DR. SANDWICH has been recognized by a lot of middle Easterners as having the best Hummus in LA and in Beverly Hills ( They have two restaurants).  It also has unbelievable Pita bread - that tastes fresh and is very different than any other Pita's one purchases anywhere in LA. Unlike the American Pitas that are bought in Supermarkets and in many Middle Eastern Restaurants that are very thin and usually somewhat hard - Dr. Sandwich's pitas are thick, fluffy and are so fresh - they feel like they just came out of an oven.

Their Falafel is also great with a perfect taste and texture and so are other dishes they serve.

There's always a large line of people waiting to purchase their hummus - as there are a lot of middle easterners and middle eastern food lovers and the secret has been shared by all of them about this restaurant.

Now with Covid 19, there's a lot of people picking up  and rightfully so.

SO why the - BUT...

The but - is because it is relatively expensive to eat Hummus at this restaurant and they do small things that truly ruin the experience.

1. The most annoying thing is that a Hummus plate costs $10 - and it comes with a relatively small amount of hummus on the plate and only ONE!!! PITA bread.
Who ever finished a whole hummus plate with only one Pita bread? 
Most people eat 2-3 pitas with their plate - which hikes the price of a hummus plate to about $12 as they charge extra for each pita.

They will give you pickles if you ask - but those too come in a very small plastic dish. The dish is about the size of small dishes inwhich people get ketchup in other places.
Middle easterners love pickles with their Hummus - and most places are very generous about the pickles and throw also olives and other pickles vegetables to show their generosity.

Dr. Sandwich gives you pickles only if you ask - and also - in a very small portion and will fill it up if you ask.

If you want a small salad or pickled white cabbage dish which a lot of people love to eat with their Hummus that will cost you extra. Relatively a lot more extra. 
Some restaurants give these two for free if they charge an expensive price for their hummus - and other restaurants give an option to order small side dishes of these two as sides.
But this restaurant doesn't do that and forces you if you want these a salad and pickled veggies that aren't pickles- to buy them as full side dishes.

I get it - that this restaurant is in Beverly Hills - and everything is more expensive also for them - when they need to maintain it in a 90212 area code.
But usually in Beverly Hills - if you want to justify high prices - one has to look the part - and this restaurant looks far from a high end place.
The restaurants decor is very basic. It doesn't have the feel of a high end restaurant. To me it felt like a pedestrian fast food diner inside a gas station in Israel - who's main clientelle is truckers stopping for a fast food meal on their way from Beer Sheva to Tel Aviv.

BOTTOM LINE:
I loved their Hummus - and I do hope this place will survive and continue thriving.
Seeing so many middle eastern restaurants come and go in LA - I know how hard it is to keep a restaurant alive in a city where people love change and aren't loyal to even wonderful restaurants.
Because of their great hummus - they have huge lines snaking around the place - but unless they figure out their pricing scheme - and what they offer for their expensive prices - they might find themselves fighting for clients in the future and once some people will be tired of paying so much for so little food and without getting the full Middle Eastern experience - with several Pitas and a plate full of Pickles - they might one day discover that customers are leaving and never coming back.

I truly hope the owners of this wonderful Hummus restaurant realize they have the momentum right now and do the needed changes in their menu and servings to ensure their customers will realize it's not just wonderful Hummus but also a great deal that is worth coming back to again and again.

Only time will Tell - if Dr. Sandwich becomes the HUMMUS CLASSIC in LA - like PINK's is to HOT DOGS - or if it will be a fad - and a wonderful memory of a wonderful restaurant that vanished over time - like DOUGH BOYS was on THIRD STREET.

Regardless of what happens to this place in the future - I do hope everyone tastes their hummus - so that they will be able to say - LA had amazing hummus that could compete with any middle eastern restaurant in the middle east! 



Monday, November 21, 2016

SABRA IS GIVING HUMMUS A BAD NAME!

What's going on with Sabra Hummus? 
It seems we didn't have time to forget about their last health problems and we're already bombarded with a new one.
The problem isn't just with one companies hummus - the problem is that Sabra - co owned by Pepsi is perhaps the largest supermarket distributor of Hummus.  They are everywhere. They are literally the face of Hummus in the US. 
As news keeps coming out about their products being dangerous to human consumption for various diseases - it will slowly create an illusion as if Hummus itself is dangerous and perhaps that will hurt the entire image of hummus as being something healthy.

I think it's really sad Sabra is having so much troubles that will hurt not just supermarket hummus - but hummus in general.

People will ask more questions about why Hummus keeps getting all these sicknesses.
I hope the people at Pepsi and Sabra aren't thinking to themselves lets just pump Sabra Hummus with more preservatives that will kill what's left of healthy products in their Hummus cause that's not the solution. 
I have eaten at so many restaurants hummus with no preservatives that had no listeria. 
The solution is to have more quality control during manufacturing.

I hope they fire top level executives cause it's obvious someone's not doing their job at that company.

Every major news outlet has written about it - from foxnews to CNBC.COM - so everyone is hearing how dangerous Sabra Hummus is once again.


Anyways, below is the article about the listeria fear and which products are in danger of being infected:


Listeria monocytogenes is an organism, which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms such as high fever, severe headaches, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea.  Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women.  The company is issuing this recall out of an abundance of caution.
Consumers with any product with a “Best Before” date up through January 23, 2017 are urged to discard it. Consumers can find code and “Best Before” date on the lid of each package.
UPCSKUItem
040822014700300051Sabra Hummus Caramelized Onion 10OZ
040822000017300066Sabra Hummus Classic 7OZ
040822011143300067Sabra Hummus Classic 10OZ
040822017497300070Sabra Hummus Classic 17OZ
040822014687300074Sabra Hummus Classic 30OZ
040822431156300076Sabra Hummus Classic 5LB – 6ct
040822011112300079Sabra Hummus Classic 2OZ – 48ct: 3 x (16 x 2oz)
040822011952300080Sabra Hummus Classic with pretzels 4.56OZ
040822011235300094Sabra Hummus Garlic 7OZ
040822011242300095Sabra Hummus Garlic 10OZ
040822017510300097Sabra Hummus Garlic 17OZ
040822012256300099Sabra Hummus Garlic 32OZ
040822301121300100Sabra Hummus Garlic 30OZ
040822011990300104Sabra Hummus Garlic with pretzels 4.56OZ
040822011921300106Sabra Hummus Jalapeno 10OZ
040822011341300117Sabra Hummus Olive 10OZ
040822011747300132Sabra Hummus Pine Nut 10OZ
040822127530300134Sabra Hummus Pine Nut 7OZ
040822990011300136Sabra Hummus Pine Nut 17OZ
040822012157300139Sabra Hummus Pine Nut 32OZ
040822012430300142Sabra Hummus Red Pepper 7OZ
040822011549300143Sabra Hummus Red Pepper 10OZ
040822017503300146Sabra Hummus Red Pepper 17OZ
040822328647300148Sabra Hummus Red Pepper 32OZ
040822301114300150Sabra Hummus Red Pepper 30OZ
040822434553300151Sabra Hummus Red Pepper 5LB – 6ct
040822011969300153Sabra Hummus Red Pepper with pretzels 4.56OZ
040822011433300158Sabra Hummus Supremely Spicy 7OZ
040822011440300159Sabra Hummus Supremely Spicy 10OZ
040822017558300161Sabra Hummus Supremely Spicy 17OZ
040822027540300164Sabra Hummus Spinach & Artichoke 10OZ
040822014731300166Sabra Hummus Sun Dried Tomato 10OZ
040822027700300266Sabra Hummus Spinach & Artichoke 32OZ
040822027588300298Sabra Hummus Spinach & Artichoke 17OZ
040822990011300501Sabra Hummus Pine Nut 17OZ – 6ct
040822017503300502Sabra Hummus Red Pepper 17OZ – 6ct
040822020114300593Sabra Hummus Basil-Pesto 10OZ
040822330466300736Sabra Hummus Tuscan Herb Garden 32OZ
040822342049301216Sabra Hummus Classic 32OZ
040822342131301271Sabra Hummus Classic with pretzels 4.56OZ – 8ct
040822342209301283Sabra Hummus Garlic 23.5OZ
040822017497301290Sabra Hummus Classic 17OZ
040822342506301430Sabra Hummus Bold & Spicy with tortilla chips 4.56OZ
040822017510301480Sabra Hummus Garlic 17OZ – 6ct
040822342728301481Sabra Hummus Classic 2OZ – 6 x 2oz (12 x 6pks)
040822011648301483Sabra Hummus Lemon 10OZ
040822342735301484Sabra Hummus Red Pepper 2OZ – 6 x 2oz (12 x 6pks)
040822330381301485Sabra Hummus Tuscan Herb Garden 17OZ
040822010078301511Sabra Hummus Classic 2OZ  – 16 x 2oz – 12 ct
040822010047301512Sabra Hummus Classic 2OZ – 12 x 2oz – 12 ct
040822342988301566Sabra Hummus SF Rosemary/Sea Salt 10OZ
040822343145301585Sabra Spreads Spicy Chili 8.5OZ – 8ct
040822343138301586Sabra Spreads Garlic Herb 8.5OZ – 8ct
040822343121301587Sabra Spreads Honey Mustard 8.5OZ – 8ct
040822343114301588Sabra Spreads Salt & Pepper 8.5OZ – 8ct
040822343671301640Sabra Hummus Taco 10OZ
040822344043301705Sabra Hummus 3 Pepper Chili 10OZ
No other Sabra products are affected. In particular, Sabra products not included in the recall are: Sabra Organic Hummus, Sabra Salsa, Sabra Guacamole and Sabra Greek Yogurt Dips.
Consumers can contact Sabra Consumer Relations at 1-866-265-6761 for additional information from 9:00 am to 8:00 PM eastern time. For product reimbursement, consumers can contact www.sabrahummusrecall.com. Full list of impacted product is below. The company has subsequently taken steps to correct this matter.
The recall is being conducted with the knowledge of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.



Friday, October 14, 2016

THE DISTASTEFUL FIRST ISRAELI HUMMUS FESTIVAL OF BEVERLY HILLS




This blog tries to stay out of Middle Eastern Politics and focus on Hummus - but sadly -  sometimes an event occurs that forces even neutral bloggers to express their opinions about events.

The Israeli consulate of Beverly Hills, the Bait Israeli and the IAC ( Israeli American community) just launched their first Israeli Hummus festival in Beverly Hills.

The event will take place outside Beverly Hills city hall - which makes it even more symbolic.

The ad for this event states:

 " Join the IAC, Bait Israeli, and the Israeli Consulate for the the First Annual Hummus Festival! The Festival will feature a smorgasbord of hummus from various vendors, fresh pita, a Judiaca booth, activities for the children and live music in both Hebrew and English! Come early to get your hands on all the fare!"

So why is an event celebrating Hummus being criticized by a blog dedicated to Hummus lovers of the world?

Perhaps there is nothing wrong with the Israeli community celebrating a food dish most Israelis love and cherish.
It's probably a great opportunity to promote various Israeli restaurants in Los Angeles and their own Hummus dishes.

That said, in LA, most of the best Hummus restaurants based on our own personal experience have always been Arab restaurants.

The Hummus festival should not have been marketed as an Israeli Hummus festival but rather as the Beverly Hills Hummus festival.

Hummus is a dish loved by everyone - and brings much pride to both Arabs and Israelis. 

Unlike the real estate conflict between Palestinians and Israelis in the middle east - a conflict that unlike the media noise about it - at it's base is a conflict focused on a land dispute -   i.e. REAL ESTATE. 

There is no conflict between Israelis and Arabs living in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, Orange County, San Fernando Valley etc.  Former Israeli and Arab country residents now residing in the US might have opposing opinions about the solution to the Israeli Palestinian conflict in the middle east - but  in the US - their legal country of resident there is no US based real estate conflict. 

That is why, I feel the Israeli consulate erred in being a partner to this event. So did the city of Beverly Hills that approved of this event outside their city hall.

The event should have been called The first Beverly Hills Hummus Festival - without having it belonging to any one nation or it could have been the Middle Eastern Hummus Festival and have all middle eastern restaurants be part of it.

Many Israelis are Hummus connoisseurs and so when it comes to Hummus they don't care who makes it as long as it has a great taste.
In Israel - the best Hummus restaurants, in many people's opinions are owned by Arabs and are located in Arab villages not in the big Jewish cities. Also, some of the best Hummus is made by Palestinians and some are even in contentious areas like east Jerusalem. 
People who love hummus know that sometimes one has to put politics aside and just focus on the taste and choose where to eat based on taste not the opinions of the creator of the hummus.

Many Israelis living in Los Angeles love going to the Arab restaurants in LA  for the great Hummus they serve. 

That said - do we really care about the politics of the owner of the Thai restaurant we love? the Indian restaurant we love? The Italian restaurant we love?
Same goes for Hummus. 

Perhaps the idea of creating an Israeli Hummus festival - is to hint to members of the LA Jewish community it's a Kosher event with Kosher Hummus.  That's OK but then they should have labeled it for what it is. A KOSHER Jewish Hummus festival rather than an Israeli Hummus festival.
Even in Israel - not all Israeli restaurants are Kosher. Some are certified as Halal - which obey the Islamic laws - and some Israeli restaurants go by no religious laws and only obey the country's health laws.

Moreover - what does Israeli Hummus festival actually mean ? The Hummus is made by local restaurants here. They are called Israeli - perhaps because the owner might be Israeli - but the food is actually middle eastern in most cases.  

Saying Israeli Hummus is like saying American Pad thai, American Alu Gobi, American Spaghetti.
While Americans love Pad Thai, Alu Gobi  and Spaghetti they aren't American dishes even if they are served in an "American restaurants" -  Hopefully, there is no hard feeling by anyone in the US for calling Pad Thai a Thai dish, Alu Gobi an Indian dish and Spaghetti an Italian dish.

Consulates always want to promote events that promote their country and so I understand why someone at the consulate approved of promoting an Israeli Hummus festival.
 I feel for most of us - words still mean something - and words can hide behind them a lot of things - including racism and hatred.

The Beverly Hills Farmer's market  which is hosting this event could have gotten probably the same amount of response and maybe even more if they labeled this the first Hummus Festival and underneath add in the paragraph describing this event- Kosher Hummus, Halal Hummus, yes and even claim there is an authentic Israeli Hummus - which I have no clue how it tastes different than an Arab or middle eastern hummus.    They could have still added fun for the whole family including Israeli music etc..This way they would not have alienated anyone and made it into an event for all middle easterners who love hummus - regardless if they are  former Israelis, Lebanese, Syrians, Egyptians, Persians and all other Middle eastern Hummus lovers.

Hummus must continue to be a tasty dish that unites all middle easterners and not something that seperates them just like other issues seperate them.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT.

I hope those of you reading this will not think I am biased against any political view. This isn't about what the solution to the conflict should be. This is merely about how we not politicize Hummus.

Here's a link to the event. If you feel like it - let the organizers know that Hummus festivals must unite people and not be something that is separates members of the middle eastern family.















Friday, September 2, 2016

BEST HUMMUS IN MUMBAI (BOMBAY)

BEST HUMMUS IN MUMBAI (BOMBAY)



A few friends travelling to India asked me about the best Hummus in Mumbai. It's been awhile since I've travelled to India so my Hummus knowledge of that continent is a bit rusty. Would love to get advice from anyone who's travelled lately there for the best kept secrets there as well as the more traditional and famous Hummus places you encountered during your travels.

I don't trust Yelp and all the other large online sharing sites cause I've seen that even with my own reviews on these large websites - The negative reviews I've written on Yelp have been deleted without explanation.  I've even seen one Middle Eastern restaurant that I myself have given negative reviews on Yelp - together with dozens of other people who gave it negative reviews - and one day Yelp cleaned it up and deleted the negative reviews. Their rating moved from bad to good.  

I Googled around looking for Hummus in Mumbai and found this blogger - who lived in Chicago and moved to Mumbai and is now travelling and writing about healthy living. She created a blog called the India Edition. She has published her articles also on Huffington Post Canada & UK, Vagabomb and India Food Network.

Unlike some other blogs which feel like they were created as an advertisement - this one looks like the real deal promoting real good food that the blogger truly loved.

Thank you Danya for your honest blog.


Here's a direct link to her article on her blog - The India Edition:

If you press on the name of the restaurant below twice you'll get a link to the restaurant's page:

So please write us if you agree or disagree with Danya and also if you find additional great Hummus in India. And now to the article in THE INDIA EDITION:


Best Hummus in Mumbai


Hummus is one of my favorite snacks – you can make or buy it and keep it in the fridge for a day or two for easy access. It is filling and nutrient-rich and naturally vegan and gluten-free. Make it even healthier by eating it with fresh veggies like carrots, cucumbers and peppers. There’s something about restaurant hummus – it just tastes better. It took me a while to figure it out but I think I cracked the code! 
This one is the easiest for a quick lunch or snack – their hummus is always the same which is something I appreciate. Standard is key! They have several locations: at Cuffe Parade (the original restaurant but I haven’t been in years), Kemps Corner (a small cafe in Crosswords) and at Palladium Mall. 
This is my go-to home delivery order on a lazy Sunday evening or weeknight. Their hummus is super creamy from the tahini! 
The only fine dining spot on my hummus list, Souk is located on the top floor of the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel. They serve a more authentic range of Middle Eastern food – my favorite dish there is definitely the zucchini and aubergine fritters. The view is lovely as well.