Simple Homemade Hummus Recipe

Simple Homemade Hummus Recipe

One of my favorite snacks in the whole world is homemade bread topped with homemade hummus, green olives, and fresh tomatoes from the garden. This hummus recipe is easy to make, super nutritious, and oh so very delicious!

Homemade Hummus

Homemade Hummus

Ingredients

  • 2 15 oz. Cans of Garbanzo Beans (drain and save the liquid)
  • ½ Cup Tahini (make sure it’s evenly mixed)
  • ¼ Cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 Lemon (juice from one lemon or more if you like it tangy)
  • 2 Cloves of Garlic (peeled and sliced, more or less depending on taste preference)
  • 1 t. Cumin (Some recipes don’t call for this spice, but I think it’s what completes the flavor.)
  • Salt and Pepper (to taste)
  • *Blender (You could also use a food processor.)
  • *Parsley (as a garnish, optional)

Directions

  • Drain the liquid from the garbanzo beans and add them to the blender. Set the liquid aside to add later as needed to get the blender going.
  • Add the rest of the ingredients (tahini, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, cumin, salt, and pepper). 
  • I like my hummus on the thicker side, so I try to add as little of the reserved garbanzo bean liquid as possible which is usually about half of a can.
  • In order to blend everything evenly, I use a large spoon to stir, blend, stir, blend, repeat until the consistency is nice and creamy.

In Conclusion

By having some delicious homemade hummus prepared ahead of time, you can be sure that when hunger strikes you will have a healthy snack on hand. I love chopping up fresh carrots and celery and using the hummus as a dip or putting it on top of my homemade bread. Delicious!

Hummus on Homemade Bread

Hummus on Homemade Bread

Embracing Motherhood Homemade Guacamole

Homemade Guacamole

Avocados are ridiculously healthy! Along with their monounsaturated fat (mostly oleic acid), they are naturally nutrient-dense and contain around 20 vitamins and minerals. I love slicing up avocado and using it on sandwiches or toast (check out my friend Lindsey’s simple and delicious recipe for avocado toast here), but I just love, love, LOVE making homemade guacamole!

Ages ago, before I attempted making most of my food from scratch, I would simply pick up one of the avocado packets from the store, but now I skip that msg laden pouch and instead make my own mixture that tastes WAY better and is better for you too.

Ingredients

  • 4 Ripe Avocados (Avocados are on the clean 15 list, so you don’t need to worry if you can’t find some that are organic.)
  • 1 Lemon (or lime)
  • 4 Cloves of Garlic (minced)
  • *1 Tomato (optional)
  • 2 t. Real Salt
  • 1 t. Cumin
  • ½ Pepper
  • *Cilantro (optional)
  • *Cayenne Pepper (to taste if you like a little spice)
Guacamole Ingredients

Guacamole Ingredients

Directions

  1. Open the avocado. Cut the avocados length-ways and pinch the skins to expel the soft buttery flesh of the fruit (yes, it’s a fruit). Discard the skins and pits and dump the avocado into your bowl.

    Avocado Flesh

    Avocado Flesh

  2. Mince the garlic. 4 pods will give the guacamole a noticeable garlic flavor and give you some garlic breath to boot, but feel free to just add one or two pods for less of a garlic effect! I like to press the garlic pods with the side of my knife until they pop and then easily remove the skins. Then I chop them as fine as I can with my big knife. Sometimes I like pulling out my hand chopper or mini food processor to get the garlic minced really fine. *If I were to add cilantro, I would put it in the food processor with the garlic, but I didn’t have any this time around, so I didn’t add it.

    Minced Garlic

    Minced Garlic

  3. Squeeze the lemon. I love using this handy lemon squeezer. (I actually kind of prefer the taste of a lime, but we usually keep more lemons on hand, so that’s what I used.)

    Squeezing Lemon on Avocado

    Squeezing Lemon on Avocado

  4. Add the seasonings. I don’t usually like measuring my seasonings. I just add some (usually less than I would think), taste it, and add more until I get the right flavor. I’m really generous with the salt here, sparing with the pepper, and appreciative of the cumin, which is really the key ingredient and gives the guacamole its distinctive flavor! I love adding cayenne to just about everything, but my kids don’t like it, so I just add it separately to my portion.
  5. Mash it up. Use a fork to mash up all of the avocado onto the sides of the bowl. Keep spinning and mashing until you’ve gone over all the avocado flesh. I think that it looks and tastes better if left a little lumpy.

    Mashed Up Avocado

    Mashed Up Avocado

  6. Chop up a tomato. This is totally all about your personal preference. I like adding just one tomato for a little color and extra flavor, but if I’m running ow on avocados and want to stretch things out, I’ll add more tomato. When I chop up the tomato, I like to get rid of all the seeds and extra juice so that it doesn’t make the dip too watery.
  7. Set and serve. The longer this sits, the more the flavors can sink in, and the better it tastes. It also tastes better room temperature. So I like to make mine the day before I need it, let it sit in the refrigerator overnight, and make sure it sits out long enough to get to room temperature before serving it.
    Holy Guacamole!

    Holy Guacamole!

    *This guacamole is so much more than just a dip! Sure you can enjoy it with some tortilla chips, but it also makes a great topping on a burger, a delightful edition on an egg sandwich, and a must have for tacos too!

Embracing Motherhood Hamburger Salad Recipe

Hamburger Salad Recipe

I love finding simple ways to make dinner that are both healthy and that my family will enjoy. The kids love eating grilled burgers on a bun or cut up and dipped in A1, but my husband and I really enjoy these hamburger salads

Ingredients

  • Grilled Hamburgers
  • Extra Sharp Cheddar Cheese Slices (Or really any kind of cheese you prefer.)
  • Lettuce (The darker the lettuce, the more nutrients it has. I prefer organic because it’s one of the dirty dozen.)
  • Green Olives (Sliced or chopped)
  • Tomato
  • Mayonnaise (I like Hellman’s.)
  • Real Salt (Get some here.)

Directions

  1. Grill some burgers. Check out my recipe: How to Make the Best Grilled Burgers.
  2. Add some cheese when the burgers are almost done cooking, cover, and let it melt.
  3. Chop up the burgers into cubes.
  4. Place on a bed of lettuce and top with tomatoes, green olives, and mayonnaise.
  5. Add a sprinkling of Real Salt on the top and serve.
Hamburger Salad

Hamburger Salad

steamed broccoli with melted butter and salt

Why Broccoli is So Good for You and How to Make the Best Steamed Broccoli

Steamed broccoli smothered with butter and sprinkled with salt is a favorite side dish in our household. I like to buy organic broccoli (when I can) and cook it a couple times a week. It makes a great accompaniment to a roast chicken or salmon dinner, and the kids love it too!

Why Broccoli is So Good For You

Broccoli is high in carotenoids, vitamin C, chromium (which helps prevent diabetes) and contains B complex, calcium, phosphorus, and potassium as well. It also contains some protein and fiber. It is rich in indoles (as are all members of the cruciferous family), which is a potent anticancer substance as well as.

Broccoli is loaded with glutathione! Glutathione is found at very high concentrations in the lens of the eye and when eaten in the form of broccoli, cabbage, and parsley, it helps to protect the eye from cataracts. Glutathione is also an antioxidant that helps prevent cancer. Studies show that people who prefer to eat broccoli have lower rates of all kinds of cancer. When you cook broccoli, 30-60% the glutathione is lost. (100% is lost in canning.) (From Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon, p. 192 and p. 374)

But Watch Out!

Broccoli also contains glucosinolates which prevent the uptake of iodine and affect the function of the thyroid so they are considered goitrogens. When iodine uptake is interfered with, it can result in an enlargement of the thyroid, known as a goiter. This is really only something to watch out for if broccoli and other cuciferous vegeatables (brussel sprouts, cabbage, and cauliflower) are eaten in excess. So don’t go too overboard on eating them!

Steaming is the Best

By steaming broccoli, you are lessening the effects of the goitrogens while maintaining the valuable nutrients packed within. I also think it tastes the best!

Ingredients/Materials

  • Broccoli (One head of organic is best.)
  • Steamer Pan (Get one here.)
  • Butter
  • Real Salt (I buy my Real Salt in bulk here. You can buy a shaker here, or a refill pouch here.)

Directions

  1. Prepare the Steamer: Fill the steamer with water and turn the heat to high.

    Steaming pan

    Steaming Pan

  2. Chop up the Broccoli: Sometimes I like cutting it into more bite size pieces before steaming, and sometimes I just chop off the stalk. (You can eat the stalk too if you’d like.)
  3. Add the Broccoli: Place the broccoli in the steamer. When I can, I like to position the head of the broccoli facing up so that the top doesn’t get overcooked.

    raw broccoli ready to be steamed

    Raw Broccoli Ready to Steam

  4. Cover and Steam for 5 Minutes: Once the water comes to a boil, I like to turn down the heat just a bit so it’s still boiling, but not spurting water out. The broccoli should be bright green and tender when it’s done.

    bright green and tender steamed broccoli cooked to perfection

    Steamed Broccoli

  5. Cold Water Bath: Run the broccoli under cold water to stop it from cooking any further. This will help the broccoli to hold its color. I usually skip this step, however, because I want the butter to melt easily.
  6. Butter and Salt: Cut into florets, smother with butter, sprinkle with salt, and serve.

    steamed broccoli topped with chunks of butter and sprinkled with salt

    Steamed Broccoli with Butter and Salt

Tomato Purée

I worked with my mom and grandma one late summer afternoon to learn the fine art of canning tomatoes. It was so awesome to learn such a fine craft, but it was sooooooo much work, and something that I just don’t have the time for these days. Well, one day, my Grandma brought over some puréed tomatoes that had been in her freezer for practically a year. I cautiously used them in a chili and it was amazing!!! The taste was so much fresher than the canned tomatoes and freezing is so much better at preserving the nutrients too. What I like most about this method is being able to do small batches as my tomatoes ripen.

Ingredients/Materials

  • 10-12 Tomatoes
  • Cilantro (Half of a bunch)
  • Parsley (Half of a bunch)
  • Optional: Dill (Half of a bunch)
  • Optional: Fresh Garlic (4 pods)
  • 2 T. Real Salt (I buy my Real Salt in bulk here, you can buy a shaker here, or a refill pouch here.)
  • Large Bowl
  • Blender

Directions

  1. Cut up the tomatoes into quarters or eighths (depending on how efficient your blender is).
  2. Smush and crush them into bottom of the blender.
  3. Cover and blend in short pulses. You may need to smush the tomatoes down more in between pulses in order to get the juice flowing and the blender to run more efficiently.
  4. Prepare the herbs by chopping them up coarsely and add them to the middle of a tomato blend cycle.
  5. Add salt to a tomato blend cycle.
  6. Dump all of the blended tomatoes into a big bowl and stir. Give it a taste test to see if you’ve added enough herbs and salt. *You can also add some garlic, but I like the taste of fresh garlic and I’m worried that over time the garlic might take on too powerful of a flavor. 
  7. Other optional ingredients: Onions, peppers, chives…be creative!
  8. Store in gallon size Ziploc freezer bags. I like to fill each bag about ¾ full. When pouring the tomato liquid into the bag, lay it down flat until the purée comes right up to the locking mechanism. This is the best way to get rid of all air bubbles. Find a flat place in your freezer to store it until it freezes in a nice shape. Try to avoid plopping the bag on top of wire racks. If you do, the bag will be more likely to stick in weird places and leak or tear when you retrieve it.
  9. Label the bags with the date you made it and the herbs you added if desired. IMG_3515
  10. To thaw, place in a warm sink bath, then add to whatever you are making!

Notes: As you are preparing your purée, think about what you’ll be using it for. I like to use mine primarily in chili, as pizza sauce, or as spaghetti sauce, so I like it to have a nice Italian flavor. You might also want to store it in some smaller pint or quart size Ziplock bags if you plan on making smaller recipes. I find that one large gallon size Ziploc bag is perfect for one pot of chili, so that’s how I like to store it.