I have to say folks - I have been in a rut in the kitchen lately. We've reached the middle of winter in Montreal now, and while it hasn't been too terribly intense, it still has me in hibernation mode. For the last week or so all I've really wanted to do was lay on the couch and eat bread. So, I was happy today when I got hit with a little burst of motivation and inspiration.
This is a recipe for a raw hummus that comes from Cafe Gratitude's cookbook, "I Am Grateful." It's a raw foods restaurant in San Francisco that my friends in the bay area should definitely visit. I have the book on loan from a friend and am checking out some of the less labor intensive recipes. All that's really required for this one is the small advanced preparation of soaking your almonds.
Almonds, and forgive me if you already know this, should really be soaked in order for you to get their full nutritional potential. Basically, when they're dry they're dormant, and they contain an enzyme inhibitor that interferes with digestion. Soaking them overnight does a couple of things. First, it wakes them back up so to speak, and converts them from a dormant food into a living food. They think they're about to become a tree and they get really excited. Soaking starts the sprouting process and enlivens the enzymes they have dwelling within them. This makes the nutrient, protein, and Vitamin E, content of the nut go through the roof (or so I'm told). Second, it neutralizes the enzyme inhibitors in the brown skin which make digestion difficult. You can then peel them easily.
Soak your nuts! And be sure to buy raw ones, preferably organic.
2.5 cups soaked almonds (soak for at least 12 hours)
1/4 cup + 1 T tahini
1/4 cup + 2 T olive oil
1/4 cup + 3 T lemon juice
3/4 cup water
1 garlic clove
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp black pepper
1 3/4 tsp cumin
Start by whizzing the garlic in the food processor to mince it. Add the drained and rinsed almonds and whizz them a few times to grind them down. Add the rest of the ingredients and process until smooth.
Taste and adjust, adding more of any of the ingredients you like to suit your taste. Enjoy! And pat yourself on the back for making a raw, living food.