Saturday, March 21, 2015

Living the Pantry Lifestyle - Two Healthy Pantry Additions

Photo from The Kitchn, link below
Recently I was looking through my pantry and realized I still had a lot of packages of dry garbanzo beans (aka: chickpeas) left to cook.  We were given a few cases last summer!  But that was fine as we were able to give some to friends and still have a good supply for our protein needs.

So I was thinking how I can use them up more quickly and the decision was made to add hummus to our diet more often.  Just in time for warmer weather cooking.  Well, it will get warmer here.  Eventually.

So I added a container of tahini to the grocery budget.  It is not cheap but is a must have for my preference in true hummus.  Sumac, too... but that is a past blog post.  I love hummus.  I doubt my mother heard of hummus, much less made it in her kitchen.

The first time I can recall eating it was when my daughter was at the University and we would meet at a Middle Eastern diner for lunch.  Much later, Christopher and I would often share hummus when he was at the University.  Albeit at a different place and he likes his with finely chopped cooked lamb spooned into the center of the bowl.  Oh, my... talk about good!

I like mine with lots of garlic and lemon and tahini and the before mentioned sumac sprinkled on top.  With a drizzle of good extra virgin olive oil drizzled over it.  Yum... and all things good for me when used with restraint, of course.

So... in a quest to add excellent nutrition as cheap as possible, I also added a bag of organic alfalfa seeds to my husband's health food store list.  He qualifies for their senior citizen discount.  Which brings the cost of the organic alfalfa seeds out of the stratosphere.  But they last for a very long time since we will only make a small amount of sprouts each week.

I've washed the half gallon size Ball jar and have it sitting on my kitchen counter ready to start the process of sprouting.  We used to make alfalfa sprouts all the time.  When Stephanie was a little girl, her favorite sandwich was cream cheese, cucumber, and alfalfa sprouts.  She called them "awful sprouts".  Not because she thought them yucky, she couldn't pronounce alfalfa.

Alfalfa sprouts are one of those foods that I no longer purchase already made at the grocery store.  It is just too easy for them to go bad and they are one of the foods that have made headlines for recalls.  And anyway, the process of sprouting is easy and fun.  Especially once it becomes a part of your everyday kitchen "To Do" list.

I will continue to share as I find new (or in these two cases, renewed) food items to make the pantry healthier.  Here are a couple links:

Want to make your own tahini?  Just mosey on over to my new favorite kitchen/cooking blog called The Kitchn... here.  I don't make my own because of this whole chronic illness-fatigue thing.  I need shortcuts or it will not get done.  Just saying...

The Kitchn also has a hummus recipe... here.  This one uses canned chickpeas, which I have been known to do when I have a last minute hummus craving.  I always keep canned chickpeas on the pantry shelf.


Thickethouse.wordpress said...

Nice post...I make hummus, but not often enough. And it's delicious and good for us. Recently I was taken with this recipe on

I am still struggling with extreme fatigue from no having the synthroid adjusted properly. I hope they'll get it right soon!
I do have a copy of Listening valley for you.

Rain said...

We've been making our own hummus here too. It is amazing how much cheaper it is. We also make our own almond milk and granola bars. I'm trying to expand the staples we can make ourselves.

Anonymous said...

I like hummus too! Thanks for the link to the recipe for homemade! Yum!
Laura C. (WA)

Vee said...

An interesting read that leaves me grinning because these foods, though tried, have been rejected...I have such texture issues. I admire your adventures in cuisine!

Rita said...

Hmmm the only sumac I know about is poison sumac like poison ivy. I must research this since there has to be something I don't know. ☺️

Unknown said...

Great Post - I love hummous too, but make the Slimming World version which is equally if not better than shop bought for me, I make the original with chickpeas, lemon, garlic, and quark, or fromage frais all blitz, or add a red pepper to the mixture too for a different taste. Love it to dip in Hot Pitta. Enjoying your Blogs. I am in Manchester in the U.K.

Anonymous said...

Ummm, glad u enjoy it all. You can have mine! 😝 I'm glad u live where u can get this stuff since u love it. You wouldn't find any of it in our grocery store ... But u could find alfalfa flowers blooming in the pastures soon. 😄 Pam (SD)