Friday, December 7, 2012


Even thought Egypt is going through a political roller coaster - more people are travelling to it than ever.   Perhaps it's cause Egypt is getting a lot of daily exposure in the mainstream media and perhaps it's cause for many in the Western world there is something extremely romantic in travelling to a nation who's people decided to take their future into their own hands and through a peaceful revolution changed their own government .

A few asked me about Hummus in Egypt and I didn't know what to answer. I love Egypt and the Egyptian people. It's a magical country that has so much history and ancient architecture that is a  monument to the beginning of modern civilization.

Since Google is tied so heavily to the Egyptian revolution - I figured it'll also be OK if I google to find out what the pro's think about Hummus there and if anything changed after the revolution also in terms of the standing of the top Hummus restaurants there.

But sadly when I googled the words : BEST HUMMUS EGYPT - there were no links to actual restaurants for 2 whole Google pages. Dozens of links - and none to actual dining places in Egypt.

I decided to change my search words and typed HUMMUS and EGYPT...
I thought maybe if I'll make it a broader search I will get a list of hundreds of Hummus restaurants in Egypt.
After all, when one types just the word HUMMUS and reads about it in Wikipedia - one of the first thing Wikipedia does mention for all Hummus history seekers is that:

"The earliest known recipes for a dish similar to hummus bi tahini are recorded in cookbooks published in Cairo in the 13th century"

So how could the nation that had the first recorded Hummus recipe published - not have any thing in GOOGLE?

But I was not willing to give up yet - so I Googled the words:  BEST MIDDLE EASTERN RESTAURANT EGYPT - and sadly, all that popped up were links to middle eastern restaurants in the US.

I was shocked that I couldn't find any Egyptian Hummus restaurants in Egypt.

Hopefully now that Egyptian are standing up and taking destiny into their own hands - they will also help remind the world - they are also the leaders with Hummus and in the future when people around the world Google Hummus and Egypt  - they will not just get the best Egyptian restaurants in the US.

I would love to hear thoughts from those who have been in Egypt recent.

One of the amazing things is that TRIP ADVISOR has a list of the top 10 restaurants in Cairo.
Their number 1 restaurant isn't a local cuisine but rather a Japanese restaurant.

#2 is a Lebanese restaurant.
Their info:

Fayruz Lebanese Restaurant  

InterContinental Cairo Citystars | Omar Ibn El Khattab St., HeliopolisCairo 11737Egypt

While I've never been to that restaurant my initial thought is that since it's in the InterContinental - it probably won't be as cheap as other less fancy places. 
But from the pictures it looks clean and indeed fancy for the middle eastern restaurant.
Trip Advisor gives #3, #4, #5 best restaurants in Cairo to an Italian, Indian and Four Seasons restaurants.
#6 is finally an Egyptian restaurant. Here's the info:
Kebabgy - 3 El Thawra Council Street | P.O. Box 732, El Orman - GizaCairoEgypt

Then #7,#8,#9 are again not local cuisines and finally at #10 are again Egyptian: 
Koshari al-Tahrir - Sharia Abd el-Khalik SarwatCairoEgypt
Only in #11 is there a recommendation for a cheap Egyptian restaurant:
Koshary Abou Tarek -16 Maarouf St. | ChampollionCairoEgypt

Looking at the reviews on Trip Advisor it's sad that traditional Egyptian Restaurants are at the bottom of the top 10 restaurants in Cairo. 

Many believe that a pride of a country rests on it's traditional cuisine - so Egyptians must find a way to help their local eateries improve their local cuisines and not just serve high end international cuisines.  

For other cities - here's links to the thoughts of the big guns of travel and what they recommend:

Lonely Planet publications a very respectable international tour  company and  they do have some recommendations about Egyptian restaurants. While I highly trust Lonely Planet about travel - their food recommendations can be a hit or miss, and the restaurants they currently recommend mostly have less than 10 likes each - so it's hard to know if others agree or not with Lonely planet's taste buds:

Except for it's top 10 list - TRIP ADVISOR also has a list of many restaurants that travellers have attended and liked - but while I love Trip Advisor's recommendations about hotels - with Food it gets more tricky as many times the highest rated restaurants are mediocre places as it's about the average rating of millions of travellers and in that kind of scenario - not always the greatest places shine.

They have a lot of restaurants but also many aren't neccasserily Local Egyptian. Here's one of the ones that is recommended but from their description doesn't seem cheap or fast and reservation is required so it's not for those just wanted to come on a whim and eat some Hummus.

"Abu Sid (Off 26th of July St., Zamalek, Cairo; tel. 02/27359640): Reservations are required at this upscale eatery, and when you get to the table, traditional Egyptian cuisine never tasted so good. "


Searching for Hummus on facebook brought up one restaurant in Egypt:

Abu Hummus, Al Buhayrah, Egypt 

There's not a lot of information on this place. The page is very limited and has only about 250 LIKES  but still more than any other place.

That's it Hummus Lovers. 
Enjoy Egypt.
Enjoy the revolution.
And keep us updated on your new findings.

BEST HUMMUS IN NEW YORK CITY ( NYC) 2012, Based on Village Voice


The Village Voice a publication that's always ahead of the pack published it's list of 10 best Middle Eastern Restaurants for 2012. 
The Village voice - is one voice I always listen to so I wondered what all of you think also of their taste buds not just their voice?  Their article got only 10 comments which might mean that their readers might love hearing a strong voice - but sadly aren't strong on their love of Hummus.
 I didn't want this voice forgotten - so I decided to help and share their conclusions:

Here's the link to the full article:

Here's their top 10 and the reason they'v chosen it:"

1. Kabab Café -- Not only does this Egyptian café in Astoria offer an outstanding meze platter, it's one of the most intimate, relaxing spaces in the entire city. If you come during the day, there will be no written menu to choose from, the owner and chef of the restaurant's minuscule kitchen, Ali El Sayed, will simply ask you what you'd like to eat. Your order must absolutely include baba ghanoush, made with intensely smoked eggplant and lime, stuffed eggplant (if available), and the place's truly distinct fava falafel -- the daintiest, crispiest fritters you could ever hope to find outside the region. 25-12 Steinway Street, Queens, 718-728-9858

2. Cedars Meat House -- The juicy meat skewers at Cedars will make every other kebab you've had in this city pale in comparison. Order the platter so you can really taste the deep seasoning and perfect char of the lamb shish kebab and the spicy beef kufta kebab. They come with plenty of accoutrements: two dipping sauces -- a potent garlic sauce, and one with hot pepper flakes; a fresh chopped cucumber, tomato, and onion salad; hummus; and baba ghanoush. Then cool down your palate with some ayran, a sour yogurt drink often consumed with meat for digestive purposes in the Middle East. 41-08 30th Avenue, 718-606-1244

3. Tanoreen -- You can find some fantastic meze -- snacks meant for nibbling on while lounging for hours at an outdoor café -- at this Bay Ridge restaurant. Try some Arab classics: kibbeh -- raw, if available (fear not, it's like steak tartare), baked, or fried -- crispy lamb-filled sambousek, and tabbouleh salad. 7704 Third Avenue, Brooklyn, 718-748-5600

4. Taïm -- This Israeli vegetarian carryout gets some serious points for boldness -- it serves three different flavors of falafel, a move that would be considered heresy in some purist circles. My favorite one features house-made harissa, a chili pepper paste common in North African cooking, which turns the balls' interior a vibrant orange color. The great thing is that when you bite into the harissa falafel you're not inundated with heat; instead you taste the flavoring's zest playing off the low, earthy notes of the chickpeas. 222 Waverly Place, 212-691-1287

5. Ilili -- A little more pricey and swanky than most other Middle Eastern restaurants in the city, Ilili serves some outstanding lamb -- made into makanek, a typical Lebanese sausage, or simply seared as chops and served with a sauce made with za'atar -- which makes putting up with the loud music and weird décor worth it. 236 Fifth Avenue, 212-683-2929

6. Taboon -- The kitchen of this spacious Hell's Kitchen restaurant riffs on classic Middle Eastern dishes using Mediterranean -- often Greek -- flavors. It's a great place to go for brunch, especially for its freshly baked, crusty bread stuffed with feta cheese and soft-boiled eggs, or ground lamb and tahini. 773 Tenth Avenue, 212-713-0271

7. Alfanoose -- This restaurant got its start as a food truck that quickly won over the lunchtime crowd in the Financial District, where the street food competition is fierce. Here the falafel, which is not always super crispy but has a lively cumin-coriander flavor, is at its best when bundled up tight in a large pita (for tidy eating) with beets, tahini, lettuce, and tomato. 8 Maiden Lane, 212-528-4669

8. Tripoli/Damascus Breads & Pastry -- Located on an Arab restaurant-dense strip of Atlantic Avenue, Tripoli has an endearingly old-school feel -- the walls are covered in dark wood, the ceiling is painted to look like the sky, and the menu specializes in Lebanese home cooking. Make sure to try the wara'anib, tight cigars of grape leaves stuffed with ground lamb and rice served warm with a bit of lemony broth. Then for dessert, head across the street to Damascus Breads & Pastry, a Syrian bakery, and pick up some first-rate walnut or pistachio baklava for the road. Tripoli (156 Atlantic Avenue, 718-596-5800), Damascus Breads & Pastry (195 Atlantic Avenue, Brooklyn, 718-625-7070)

9. Moustache -- Much has been written about this West Village restaurant's flatbreads, but the best dish on the menu is also the most ordinary sounding -- grilled chicken over lentil puree. These are no ordinary lentils: They're softened and mashed until velvety and spiced with plenty of garlic and a drizzle of potent olive oil. Though it might be hard to resist the lamb sandwiches and fancy pitzas, this plate won't let you down. 90 Bedford Street, 212-229-2220

10. Gazala's -- At this Druze Israeli restaurant, located on the Upper West Side, you'll find the kitchen staff hand-rolling kibbeh at tables hidden in the back of the dining room, and freshly made bread that's stretchy, thin, and more like South Asian roti than the pita found in most Middle Eastern restaurants. Use it to scoop up lemony tahini and thinly sliced grilled lamb -- one of the best entrées on the menu. 380 Columbus Avenue, 212-873-8880"

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Hummus: the ultimate guide for beginners

So I found this interesting article online when I googled the word Hummus. This is an article from the blog I Googled Israel giving a brief history of Hummus and top 10 places to eat Hummus in Israel:

They also have an interesting video about Hummus in Israel:

Sunday, October 28, 2012


"East is East and West is West and Never the twain they meet"

So wrote the poet awhile back, and his words are so accurate - especially when we are looking at Hummus.

The success of food trucks in LA has led to a fusion of various cuisines - including Asian and Mexican.
And while some of these fusions do work and create a new hybrid that is interesting -
The combination of middle eastern and Mexican cuisine doesn't work in our opinion on any level.

There is no need for a Burrito - cause Middle Easterns already have the Pita.
There is no need for hot peppers - cause middle easterners already have Garlice

And there's no need for Guacomole sauce- cause we already have Hummus.

Thus I don't understand why people love this new cuisine and the fact that it's becoming so popular proves that at the end of the day - people don't really want to eat great food - but prefer eating dilluted food as long as it has a catchy name!

Both Mexican and Middle Eastern foods are wonderful - both are spicy both are unique both are very popular and both are healthy.

But the combination of both creates such a cacophony of different strong tastes that it becomes something incoherent and chaotic.

The texture of Mexiterranean is also a travesty as that too is inconsistent with either one of the two original cuisines that created it.


Mexiterranean to me is like a TIGON or a LIGER - a combination of a Tiger and Lion. Can it be achieved thanks to modern science? Yes. Is it good for the new hybrid animal? No. Does it create a totally deformed new animal? TOTALLY!! Is it dangerous? YES. It breaks the heart of anyone that loves Tigers and Lions and sees what science can do to destroy both breeds.

So perhaps the question of the day isn't COULD THIS HYBRID BE DONE but rather -

And to that my answer is a simple and very loud - NO!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012


Another cool Hummus themed project we wanted to share. A  Hummus music video shot in a Hummus bar in NYC.

The video is called : We found love in a Hummus place.

It's already gotten over 16,000 hits on

To learn more about the project go to HUGE MISTAKE's WEBSITE:

The music video was created by talented film maker Shen Liberman - a filmmaker to watch and the video is a spoof of Rihanna's song: :"We Found Love".
The music video has that 80's retro feel and it's a really fun video to watch.

The video was shot as an ultra low budget project and that forced the creators of the video to replace their lack of money with a lot of creativity.

Hopefully as art will deal more seriously with Hummus, like in this wonderful video  -
Hummus bars and restaurants will start treating their Hummus with more respect.

It's sad that such a fine dish is still given so little respect and especially in the US  - Middle eastern restaurants - put so little energy into really fine tuning the recipe and so many of them serve bland and uninspiring hummus that is hurting it's acceptance by the public as a high end treat.

In the middle east chefs study for years the fine art of making it.
And for those smiling as they read this - FYI - making great Hummus is just as complex as making great Sushi,  Pasta or complex fish sauces . The  basic idea of making Hummus is simple. Mastering how to make it exquisite is complex.
Many Middle Eastern friends have complained to me that American Hummus - is to a cake lover - like eating a Twinkie. Something that tastes like a plastic commodity - not like a baked good.

Hopefully as Hummus enters the pop culture more and more - with film and music videos like the one's we've covered - chef's will realize it is something they need to pay more attention to.

After all - Hummus based on this video - can help you find love.

Bon Apetite lovers of life, lovers of people and lovers of hummus.

Thanks Shen for making this wonderful video.
We're looking forward to see your future projects.

Saturday, March 31, 2012


Awhile back we reported to all of you about the Hummus Wars between Israel and Lebanon.
We even followed up on that funny story that kept developing like a true Middle Eastern Soap opera.
(For all those who forgot -

Click here for the AP story reported by the NYPOST

Well, like all real life soap operas - Hollywood eventually comes knocking - and this story is now being made into a film by gifted Los Angeles director - Avital Levy.

The project already has a trailer that can be seen and they're raising money for it on - A Jewish kickstarter.
And for those who have been living under a rock for the last six month and have never heard the name Kickstarter - has become the premiere destination for many filmmakers and all other visionaries to raise funding for their various projects.
But while Kickstarter has endless projects and thus it's easy for fund seekers to get lost in the shuffle -
Jewcer aims at catering to a more specific crowd and for more focused projets and hopes that will make it easier for those interested in Jewish themes to find the right project they'd like to fund.
Here's what I found on them online:

"Jewcer is a crowdfunding platform for projects, ideas and causes benefiting the global Jewish community and Israel. Jewcer innovators and funders make a positive impact on the world by sparking innovations and turning ideas into reality."

Here's the link to the Hummus War's Jewcer page
Their goal is to raise $8000 and they've already raised $345

Here's what they write about the project:

"Hummus Wars is a documentary about national pride through food and by breaking a world record. Each country has the intention of winning and remaining steadfast about their superiority, ownership and historical connections to hummus. The goal of the documentary is to shoot the battle from the perspective of each country - Israel and Lebanon while capturing the events and points of view from within these countries which have been neck to neck to win since 2007. Ultimately, this is the story of people, community and two little countries attempting to reach a form of self-determination through their status with hummus."

Directed by Avital Levy
Cinematography by Aner Moss + Avital Levy
Edited by Orly Shuber + Avital Levy

So for all you Hummus lovers - I hope you help them out, cause I think the world needs more Hummus themed films.

Good luck to the filmmakers and we can't wait to see your Hummus film.

If you want more info here are the links both to Jewcer and to the Hummus War's page:

And for those wanting to pursue their own project on Jewcer, Click here for Jewcer

Wednesday, March 21, 2012


ES TU BRUTE are the last words of Casear, in Shakespeare's Casear.
The idea that you've been betrayed even by your closest friends.
Not just betrayed. Stabbed in the back. Killed by a friend's painful dagger! That's what I felt lately with Sabra's Hummus.
Sabra has been an old friend.
With all the chaos and instability in the world - Sabra Hummus has always maintained a high level of consistency and while it's never been a spectacular Hummus- it's always been good enough that it could serve as the go to Hummus when there was no other alternative around.

But the love story's gone.
The little magic their hummus used to have is lost.
I've tried several of their Hummus variations in LA and while initially I tried to give every justification in the book as to why I'm not loving their hummus.
Finally I had to admit.
The Hummus tastes different.
It tastes more bland.
It tastes more artificial.
It tastes more generic
It tastes like there's more preservatives in it and yes... it even tastes a little bit more plasticky than before.

It's sad when denial ends and you got to face the mirror and say to yourself - I've been dillusional for so long.

I have no idea why after all those years - Sabra has decided to move on from it's loyal base of Hummus lovers and fans.

But that's life.
Nothing stays constant.
Sony used to rule the music world with their walkman.
But there's a new king in town. Who remembers walkman today - it's all about the ipad...

So goes the glory of the hummus world.

Good bye Sabra.
I love you -
But now I must find another hummus to love.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Best Hummus in East Jerusalem

This article was taken from Globes, the Israeli Wall Street Journal

And their selections are:

Little Abu Shukri
Abu Hassan of Salah A Din
Sultani Restaurant or Abu Hassan El Bagdadi
Acramawi of Shehem Gate

And for those who want to read a little more and know Hebrew - here's the full article titled: ZEN AND THE ART OF EATING HUMMUS: The guide to Hard Core Hummus in East Jerusalem
זן ואמנות אכילת החומוס: המדריך לחומוסיות "הארד קור" במזרח ירושלים
הסיור "בין הגרגרים" שעובר בין חומוסיות סודיות במזרח ירושלים הוא בדיוק מה שהרופא המליץ לכם לחורף הזה ■ בסיור תאכלו תתענגו על הטעם ועל אנקדוטות היסטוריות ■ ניגוב נעים
13/02/2011, חגית אברון

ראשית סיפור המעשה הוא במייל תמים שהועבר לתפוצה אקראית של גברים ונשים, שעליו כותבו מנהלים בכירים, אנשי היי-טק ומספר שפים שאולי יגלו עניין כלשהוא בסיור חומוסיות בירושלים. "הסיור יעבור בין מספר חומוסיות סודיות במזרח העיר", כך נכתב במייל, "והוא מיועד לאוהבי חומוס אמיתיים ולבעלי קיבה חזקה". התגובות הנלהבות לא איחרו לבוא, בעיקר מצד הגברים בחבורה שהכריזו חגיגית שלא מאיימים על חומוסולוג בחומוס, ובכלל למה רק חמש חומוסיות? "הבו לנו עוד" תבעו בהתלהבות גברית אופיינית, ולבסוף, כצפוי, אכלו ברעש גדול שתי צלחות חומוס כמו גם את הכובע ונדמו.
וכך יצא לו הסיור "בין הגרגרים" לדרך. את הסיור מדריך דורון יושע, טיילן נלהב, חוקר ירושלים ומורעל חומוס, שהגה את הפרויקט. התוצאה - מפת חומוסיות אותנטיות ומשובחות, רובן בגומחות זעירות, שאותה שרטט דורון בעמל וקפידה. ואנחנו, בני מזל שכמותנו, ניווטנו בעקבותיו במשך יום שלם, טועמים, מגרגרים, נושמים ואוכלים חומוס מתובל בסיפורים, באנקדוטות היסטוריות ותרבותיות מרתקות, חשופים לפסיפס מרהיב של צבעים וריחות ומרגישים הכי חו"ל בארץ. להלן סקירה לא ממצה של החוויה.
"בין הגרגרים" סיור חומוסיות בירושלים -דורון יושע. טלפון: 052-4673663. כ-100 שקל לאדם כולל טעימות והדרכה. ניתן לארגן סיורים לקבוצות בתיאום
אבו שוקרי הקטן
רבות הן החומוסיות הנושאות את שם המותג היוקרתי "אבו שוקרי" ועל כן יש להיזהר מחיקויים. "אבו שוקרי" הקטן, קרוב משפחה של "אבו שוקרי" הגדול (והמשובח שלעצמו), ממוקם בלהב הרובע השוקק, לא רחוק מכנסיית הקבר, וכמה מטרים מחומוס לינא המפורסם.
שוקרי הקטן, סירב לתיעוד העיתונאי, ואף דחק בנו לקחת את קערית החומוס ולאכול אותה מחוץ למסעדה. לא נעלבנו, החומוס היה שווה את היחס המעט מנוכר. בשלב הזה, חשוב לציין, פרשו מרבית גברברי הקבוצה לאנחות, אוחזים בבטנם וממלמלים דבר מה אודות פגישה חשובה. וכך נותרנו אנחנו, דבקים במשימתנו העיתונאית, עם דורון , נציגות שפים וקערית החומוס האחרונה לאותו היום.
תגובות הקהל: חומוס נפלא, בעל טעמים נהדרים של טחינה ומקרם אוורירי.
דבר השפים: חומוס גברי, טחינה גסה, טיפת חמיצות ובעל טעמים עזים ומודגשים.
הסוד: פטרוזיליה טחונה בתוך התערובת, המעניקה לחומוס מרקם אוורירי.
אבו חסן של סלאח א-דין
יורדים ברגל לרחוב סלאח א-דין שוקק החיים - השפים עוצרים להתפעל מעלי רקפות למילוי, מכרוביות ענק ונבלעים בתוככי חנויות תבלינים. מידי פעם מצביע דורון על פינת חמד נסתרת, גן חבוי מעין, בניין יפה או מציין עובדה היסטורית מרתקת. קפיצה קטנה לחו"ל, כבר אמרנו.
החומוס של אבו חסן הוא חומוסייה ותיקה בת יותר מ-50 שנה. כוך קטן ללא שולחנות ישיבה, המגיש לסועדים המקומיים מבעד לדלפק קטן. יושע מאלתר עבורנו כמה ארגזים הפוכים ועליהם מניח את קעריות השילוש הקדוש של החומוס, חומוס פול ומסבחה. בעל המקום מוסיף גם רוטב ירקרק של פלפלים חריפים, לימון ושום שאותו מוסכים על החומוס, גלדי בצל וכדורי פלאפל.
תגובות הקהל: חומוס מעלף! פוסקת החבורה, קריאות עונג נשמעות עם כל טבילה.
דבר השפים: חומוס בעל מרקם עדין וטעם לימוני, טחינה מעולה באיכותה ופול נפלא וחמצמץ.
הסוד: עקביות. במשך 50 שנה ברציפות נפתח המקום ב-02:00 לפנות בוקר, אז מתחילה מלאכת הכנת החומוס המדוקדקת, שמתכונה לא השתנה מאז ועד היום.
אבו חסן אל בגדאדי (מסעדת סולטאני)
נכנסים לעיר העתיקה מבעד לשער הפרחים ונבלעים בתוככי סמטאות הרובע המוסלמי, בינות בתי המקומיים שניחוחות ארוחת צהרים וצהלות ילדים השבים מבית הספר בוקעים מחלונותיהם. אנו פוסעים בעקבות דורון במקומות שאין בהם רמז לתיירים, או כפי שהיטיב לנסח זאת אחד ממשתתפי הסיור, "מקומות שלא הלכו בהם מאז מלחמת ששת הימים".
ובכל זאת, באותה שעת צהרים של יום חול, הסכסוך נראה רחוק מתמיד, הסמטאות שלוות ותושבי הרובע עסוקים בענייניהם.
החומוס של אבו חסן הבגדאדי נמצא בעיבורה של שכונת מגורים בה מתגוררים צועני הרובע. את החומוסייה הנפלאה הזאת גילה דורון במקרה, עת נמלט מהגשם אל תוככי המסעדה הקטנה, שם הוא נפגש לראשונה עם החומוס של הבגדדי. נפגש ונפגע.
אבו חסן, דמות משופמת ותיאטרלית להפליא, מכין בפנים חתומות חומוס אלוהי במכתש ועילי, עבודה ידנית הניכרת בטעם. מלבד החומוס הנפלא, שולף הבגדאדי מנצ'טה אימתנית ופוצח בקיצוץ דתי של ירקות לסלט אותו הוא מערבב בטחינה ומגיש בשתיקה לסועדים.
וכן, יש להודות שזה היה הרגע היחיד בסיור שבו השתתקו גם המאצ'ואים שבחבורה, מאימת התרחיש הפוטנציאלי אודות קבוצת ישראלים הכלואה בכוך שבעליו אוחז בסכין בנבכי הרובע המוסלמי.
תגובות הקהל: "הארד קור" של החומוס. טעם עז ומודגש של חומוס אסלי. החומוס הכי אותנטי עד כה.
דבר השפים: חומוס בעל טעם דומיננטי המושג בזכות המכתש והעילי, כמעט ללא תיבול וללא טחינה, מרקם משיי.
הסוד: לאחר הבישול עוברים הגרגרים תהליך של סינון והוצאת נוזלים באמצעות שקית בד ורק אז גורס אבו חסן את הגרגרים ידנית.
עכרמאווי של שער שכם

בין הטעימות - חומוס גרגרים, חומוס פול ומסבחה, בה הגרגרים משתכשכים במיצי הטחינה והלימון. בגלל השעה המאוחרת (11:00 בבוקר) פספסנו את ה"פאטה" - חומוס ובו פיסות של פיתה מבושלות יחדיו. החומוסייה של עכרמאווי (שמקורו בעין כרם), החלה את דרכה בשנות ה-50 ומאז ועד היום היא משרתת את המקומיים שבשעה בה אנחנו הגענו כבר סיימו את ארוחת הבוקר שלהם והביטו בקבוצה הצפונבונית במבטים משועשעים.
את המתכון לחומוס הביא לארץ פועל מסוריה ומאז ועד היום מוכן החומוס על-פי מתכון זה.
תגובות הקהל: התגובות היו נלהבות אם כי מתונות. מדובר בחומוס ערבי אותנטי וטעים.
דבר השפים: מרקם משחתי מדויק עם מעט חספוס בלשון, שמן זית נהדר וחריף שמתחבר לחומוס בשלמות.
הסוד: שמן זית מאיכות מעולה, המופק מעצי זית שגדלים בהר ומושקים רק באמצעות מי גשמים. יחס משתנה של לימון-מלח בהתאם למזג האוויר, מה שמייצר הבדל גדול בטעם.
טיפ 1: תשכחו מתנועות סיבוביות
בניגוד למנהג המקובל של ניגוב החומוס בתנועה סיבובית עם הפיתה, את החומוס למעשה טובלים בתנועות מעודנות. ובכלל, יש המאמינים כי הטובלים בחומוס באופן קבוע הם אנשים רגועים יותר, בשל העובדה שהחומוס מכיל רמות גבוהות של טריפטופן, חומצת אמינו המעובדת במוח לסרוטונין - חומר המופרש במוח האחראי לתחושת הרוגע והאושר. הלאה הציפרלקס, מהיום איכלו חומוס.
טיפ 2: לא להגיש את החומוס חם
שימו לב! חומוס לעולם אינו מוגש חם. הגרגרים הינם הדיירים היחידים בקערת החומוס המורשים להיות חמימים. אם המשחה עצמה חמה, דעו לכם כי חיממו את החומוס, אקט ברוטלי המנוגד לאמנת החומוס הבינלאומית.

Sunday, February 19, 2012


One of the interesting things I noticed in Yelp's list of Hummus restaurants in Los Angeles is that many of the names on the list I never even heard of.
I asked friends and they didn't hear about them either and they're just as big Hummus Connesseurs as me.

I don't know if it says something about Yelp or about those who judge the Hummus. But since we aim to be fair and unbalanced Hummus critiques - we'll give all these places the benefit of the doubt. Also, many of the places don't neccessarily have the best Hummus but are located in a place that has heavy traffic and so gets lots of reviews. ( Remember those who said in the restaurant business it's only about 3 things: LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION!)
What the list clearly shows is that Zankou chicken have truly positioned themselves to be the most talked about online Middle eastern restaurant and that Glendale and Pasadena have become a true alternative for middle eastern food to Los Angeles.
While I do like their food - their Hummus - is their weakest link and I'd grade it only as barely a 6 (Out of 10) And that's on a good day... Zankou is to Hummus what Mcdonalds is to Hamburgers. Clean, fast but far from special!
That said, in the coming month's check out the rest of the top ten Yelp list and if anyone else has experience with any of the places to send us your thoughts.

!. Hayat's Kitchen got 205 votes and overall 4.5 stars (out of 5)
11009 Burbank Blvd
North Hollywood, CA 91601
(818) 761-4656

2. Mini Kabob got 200 votes and overall 4.5 stars (out of 5)
313 Vine St
Glendale, CA 91204
(818) 244-1343

3. Mediterranean Cafe got 389 votes and overall 4.5 stars
273 Shoppers Ln
Pasadena, CA 91101
(626) 793-8844

4. Skaf's grill got 184 votes and 4.5 stars
6008 Laurel Canyon Blvd
North Hollywood, CA 91606
(818) 985-5701

5. Sultan's chicken got 79 votes and 4 stars
311 W 6th St
Los Angeles, CA 90014
(213) 236-0604

6. Zankou Chicken got 253 votes and 4 stars
1415 E Colorado St
Glendale, CA 91205
(818) 244-1937

7. Zankou Chicken got 505 votes and 4 stars
5065 W Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90027
(323) 665-7842

8. Sunnin Lebanese cafe got 471 votes and 4 stars
1776 Westwood Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90024
(310) 475-3358

9. Kabab way got 90 votes and 4.5 stars
919 S Glendale Ave
Glendale, CA 91205
(818) 242-3150

10. Zankou Chicken got 481 votes and 4 stars
1296 E Colorado Blvd
Pasadena, CA 91106
(626) 405-1502

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Hummus on CNN

For those who didnt notice Cnn had a story about hummus

One Appalachian's guide to hummus
Editor's Note: Rick Morris is a web developer and volunteer firefighter from Canton, North Carolina. He is one of seven CNN viewers selected to be a part of the Fit Nation Triathlon Challenge program. Each athlete receives all the tools necessary to train for and compete in the Nautica Malibu Triathlon this September, alongside Dr. Sanjay Gupta. The seven athletes met up two weeks ago in Atlanta for the official kickoff of the program, where Rick developed a new taste for humm

Hummus. The very word, for those like me, not in the know, sounded like a foreign term for something gross. Globular pustules on a teenager's face. A backwoods verb for singing under one's

breath (“hummus a song, Cooter”). Perhaps a brand of automobile.

Until recently, I can honestly say that I had never heard of hummus. In fact, I was somewhat taken aback when it was placed in front of me at a recent restaurant gathering. It evolved something like this...

“Want some hummus, Rick?” they asked.

“What's hummus?" I inquired.

Atlanta's crowded Flying Biscuit restaurant went near silent for a moment that day, my friends. A myriad of eyes in disbelief angled my direction. I'm pretty sure the winds outside got angry and old-man winter was preparing a cold blast of disdain to lash at me the moment I walked out the door.

I was quickly rescued by those sharing the same table. “It's similar to a bean dip,” one said. “You're going to like it,” boasted another. “Give it a try.”

It clearly didn't appear to have tomato in it (I can't stand tomatoes), and hey, I was pretty hungry so I grabbed a triangle of pita bread, spread a generous amount of hummus on it, and sent it down the hatch.

What happened next was comparable to a high-speed ride on the autobahn in an Italian sports car! My first kiss! Winning the lottery! Skydiving! Releasing the rope swing and plunging into the clear, cold water of the mighty Pigeon River on a hot summer's day...

Well, maybe not as exciting as all that. But, clearly I had found a new food that was truly like a party in my mouth. It was delicious. Better yet, I've since learned it is very healthy. Amazing! Something that tastes great and is good for you.

For someone whose Sunday dinners generally consisted of fried chicken, corn-field beans, smashed taters (if you must ask, you need to visit my area) and sweet iced tea, I had written-off ever discovering new foods satisfying both requirements.

As a member of this year's CNN Fit Nation Triathlon Challenge, I was already in the market for good nutrition. So I decided to delve deeper into this hummus thing. I wanted to know exactly where it comes from, what it consists of, and how I could make my own.

My research into the wonderful world of hummus began online. Not to be confused with “humus," an organic matter or compost, I discovered hummus is a Middle Eastern bean dip made from a few basic ingredients: cooked chickpeas or garbanzo beans, olive oil, tahini (ground sesame seeds), lemon juice, salt, and garlic.

For someone who prides himself in whipping up the best tzatziki around – a recipe given by a Greek friend while in Europe – I'm now fully confident I can create hummus. Just gotta see if my local grocery store has chickpeas.

The origin of hummus comes from “himmas” or chickpeas, leading to the Arabic “hummus," then the Turkish word “humus," and finally settling in the West back in the Arabic style of “hummus."

As I said earlier, hummus is spelled the way we Americans see it so as not to be confused with the aforementioned English term for dead dirt. Did you get all that?

Now that I know what it is made of, I checked out the nutritional information on hummus. Rich in vitamin C and iron, hummus also provides high amounts of vitamin B6 and folate. There is plenty of protein and dietary fiber courtesy of the chickpeas. The tahini (again, ground sesame seeds) contains a healthy amino acid. And, depending on the oil used, you get a nice portion of monounsaturated fats, which improve cholesterol levels – both LDL and HDL.

So... how to eat hummus? Apparently, it can be pasted to just about anything – bread, crackers or celery, for example. My initial dish came with feta cheese sprinkled on top. Mmmmmm! I like hummus so much that I think I'll just spoon it until I have more time to ponder the varying recipes and uses.

In the West, hummus is typically served cold as an appetizer or dip, and transported to drooling taste buds via a piece of pita or flat bread. In the Mediterranean, you'll almost always see hummus served with a small assortment of dishes precluding the regular meal. That's called a “meze."

Fish, eggplant, chicken, and just about any lunch or dinner menu is complimented with hummus. Palestinians and Israelis typically serve it warm, with bread before, during or after any meal. Exotic spices such as cumin, paprika, parsley, excellent olive oil, and mint leaves often garnish hummus in Palestine.

I asked a number of my “kin folk” and local residents here in the Canton area and discovered few had even heard of hummus. A couple of them were well versed, but most had no idea what it is. Evidently, we rural, small-town people are the last to know when it comes to international cuisine.

Thankfully, this eases my feelings of embarrassment from my initial encounter with hummus. However, it bothers me that so many of us are missing out! Unlike Middle Eastern countries that battle each other for the world's largest hummus dish, Americans are just beginning to discover its succulent taste and various uses. Lebanon, by the way, holds the current record, at 23,000 pounds - set one day in 2010!

I've learned that Americans only recently began consuming hummus, with about 15 million eating it regularly by 2008. If my math serves me correctly, that means about 300 million of us were not partial to this simple, delicious dish.Probably because we had never tried it.

But, the popularity of hummus has skyrocketed over the past four years and it's safe to assume that about ten percent of Americans now partake in its consumption weekly. Maybe I'll start a chain of hummus-oriented restaurants, introducing this wonder food to all of America. At the very least, a town hall focus group.

From what I've discovered, hummus is a miracle food. I can't find anything negative about it. It tastes great, can be fabricated quickly and inexpensively, and contains plenty of nutrient rich ingredients.

My endeavor to uncover the mysteries of hummus has me feeling like I just completed a ninth-grade research paper. But that's perfectly fine with me. I've learned enough to confidently rescue the next lay person who asks, “What's that?” In fact, I'll take any moment of culinary humiliation in exchange for the opportunity to discover a delicious new food.

In contrast, plenty of visitors to my neck of the woods have frowned at the site of squirrel dumplings. But for those who try them, they are usually hooked. Well, some are just being social. I mean, it is prudent to show appreciation when a moon-shining, outhouse-using, up-the-holler-living Appalachian tosses their finest culture at you, right?

Back to that restaurant in Atlanta... as my glorious moment of hummus introduction came to its climax, our waiter was busy inquiring about our libation for the meal.

“I'll have a Pepsi,” I requested. Strike two!

“Don't you know this is the Coca-Cola capital of the world?” she asked, as the ground settled to a minor rumble. “The Coke Museum is just a few blocks away!” another proclaimed.

“Coke please,” I declared. “And, another platter of that hummus stuff!”

P.S. – If you have a good hummus recipe, comment about it below.

Post by: Rick Morris - Fit Nation Participant
Filed under: 2012 Fit Nation Triathlon Challenge • Kickoff Weekend • Rick Morris

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Israel 2012

The Israeli Hummus scene is exploding. There's a lot of new players opening daily and there's a lot of the classic places still there.
One of the most popular Tel Aviv Newspapers - MOUSE - ( Kind of like the NY VILLAGE VOICE or the LA WEEKLY - had their readers rank Hummus joints. Here's their ranking:
For those who can't read Hebrew - here's the list:
1. Abbu Hassan - Jaffo
2. Sayed - Acres
3. Abu Adehem - Kfar Yassif
4. Abu Adehem - Tel Aviv
5. Hummus Ashkera - Tel Aviv
6. Bahadonness - Ramat Gan
7. Pinati - Jerusalem
8. Halil - Ramleh
9. Hummus Lina - Jerusalem
10. Abu Gosh Hahadasha- Derech Hashalom 65 Abu Gosh

We also decided to check a few places - and here's our conclusions for 2011/2012

1. Ali Karavan (or) Abu Hassan - Tel Aviv - Jaffo
Still considered by may Tel Aviv residents as the top tier Hummus joint. Opens early and closes in the early afternoon. Always crowded. Cramped seats. No frills but great Hummus. THUMBS UP!

2. 206 - Moshe Sneh 54 - Tel Aviv
A very popular place that's always packed. They have great food and wonderful service but their Hummus is mediocre. They also have a wonderful fish restaurant next door. Hummus is their major flaw. THUMBS DOWN!

3. The Lebanese Restaurant - Hashalom 88 Abu Gosh:
Abu Gosh has a huge culture of Hummus and so many legendary rivalaries. We've checked a few places there. The Lebanese - one of the most popular places there - has great service and wonderful prices -but their Hummus is mediocre. Thumbs down!

4. Mifgash Karavan - Derech Hasalom 27 - Abu Gosh:
This place used to have great hummus. Then it deteriorated for many years. We decided to recheck even thought we had very little expectations after all the times we were frustrated by it. But today their Hummus has greatly improved. While it's not a top tier restaurant like it used to be. They still serve very good Hummus and are located in a beautiful location. THUMBS UP!

5. Hummus and Tehina: Outskirts of Kfar Shmaryahu:
This is a small Hummus joint on the outskirts of one of the richest neighborhoods in Israel. The Hummus used to be really good but this year in our random test - relative to the past it deteriorated - so unfortunately for this year we'll have to give it a thumbs down - but we do like this place and it feels intimate and local and are so hoping next year when we check it again it'll prove us wrong and improve their hummus like it used to be - fresh and tasty. THUMBS DOWN!

6. Hazaken Vehayam ( Old Man and the sea) - Jaffo.
One of the best Middle Eastern restaurants in Tel Aviv - a huge cultural phenomenom. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED for their wonderful service. Huge salad offerings and their extremely colorful serving of food. This is a must for every tourist coming to Tel Aviv. It's truly amazing.
That said - their hummus is only mediocre and sadly while we truly love this place and hope it'll continue it's unique style and offerings - in terms of Hummus - it's a THUMBS DOWN!

7. Ahmed and Salim - Herzlia
Good Hummus. This place also used to serve much better hummus but something happened. It's hummus quality has deteriorated. THUMBS DOWN

8. Sabich Florentine - Florentine 36 Tel Aviv
Great Hummus - THUMBS UP.

9. Mifgash Gesher Hayarkon - Derech Namir 136 - Tel Aviv
Used to be one of the best low key Hummus joints located in a gas station. The place is still fully packed - but their prices have skyrocketted, their service has gone down, their quality and their quantity of hummus has also deteriorated. Bummer. It was such a great place. Please come back to what you were. Please? THUMBS DOWN.

10. Abu Yussuf - Kikar Paris - Haifa
A legendary restaurant - located in a renovated and historical place in downtown haifa. The food was of extremely high quality and they were extremely generous with the portions but the Hummus wasn't the stuff legends are made of and we were highly dissappointed. THUMBS DOWN!