The quasi-Vegan diet I struck for myself back at the end of January is still going strong, thanks in no small part due to continued exploration of vegan dishes – tweaking things I already did, trying out new recipes altogether.
As you may recall, I ended up eating a lot of humous over January and, while I’m certainly not sick of it, some variety is definitely appreciated. Which is why my interest was piqued by the idea of swapping out chick peas for a different kind of bean – borlotti beans.
I caught a few recipes online that recommended sumac, which I think I’d like to try. This time, however, I elected for the Arabic spice-blend used in kabsah (or mandi, if Yemeni is more your style). I had it on hand, and wanted to start getting through it whilst still fresh. Worked a treat.
Breakdown of the humous, then:
-4 tbsp tahineh
-400ml (volume) cooked borlotti beans
-2 small onions, diced and pre-caramelised
-healthy glug of olive oil (~3 tbsp)
-1 tbsp kabsah spice blend
-juice of 1 lemon
-splash of water to thin, as necessary
-2 tsp salt
-pepper to taste
Caramelising the onions in advance really rounded out the flavour. I cheated and did it over moderate heat, which cut the cook time to around 10 minutes or so. I threw in two teaspoons of caster sugar, which was another deliberate fudge. I’m sure it’d be even better done properly. The blending of the spread is haphazard – so long as you end up with a texture you’re comfortable with in the end, it doesn’t really matter the order in which you add the ingredients, really.
The tabouleh was a pretty straight-ahead affair – handful of mint, maybe three or four times that parsely, half a head of green lettuce, several tomatoes and half a cucumber, a single lemon juiced, with plenty of salt, cumin, coriander and pepper to taste. I pre-cooked one (dry) cup of bulgur and let it cool before getting on with the rest of the mix. Tossed with a healthy amount of olive oil, it did quite nicely. Hearkening back to the facile tips of yore, I microwaved the lemons half a minute to more easily release the juice.
I quickly made some some flatbreads up (mix of self-raising and gram flours, water, aqua faba, basil and salt) to round off the meal. Ended up being a bit dish intensive on the prep-side, but the actual time spent was minimal.