Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Why I Think You Should Make Your Own Hummus

I love making hummus in my Thermomix – once you’ve invested in a jar of tahini (or you can make it yourself), a few cans of chickpeas and a few other bits and bobs that you probably already have banging around in your pantry it’s ready to go whenever you want to make it. But there are more benefits than just being convenient - saving you from lots of little numbers and saving you money are things I like about it too!

Ingredients required to make hummus in the Thermomix (prices from Woolworths at the regular price):

1 garlic glove                      $0.15 ($1.50 per bulb)
400g canned chickpeas        $0.81 ($0.20 per 100g)
30-50g lemon juice              $0.78 (each)
1 Tbsp Tahini                      $0.20 (1.32 per 100g)
20g olive oil                        $0.11 ($0.72 per 100ml)
1 tsp cumin oil                    $0.39 ($0.77 per 10g)
2 pinches salt                      $0.03 ($0.15 per 10g)
1 pinch pepper                    $0.03 ($0.32 per 10g)
2 pinches paprika                $0.04 ($0.20 per 10g)
Total Cost                           $2.54 (450g)

The cost of branded Hummus 375g $5.04 ($1.34 per 100g)

Making your own hummus in your Thermomix cost $0.56 per 100g compared to store bought which is $1.34 making it 58% cheaper than store bought. That’s a big savings!

So what’s in store bought hummus? I compared a brand that is readily available in all the big supermarkets in the larger size of 375g so that it was more comparable with what we are making in the Thermomix. I feel disappointed that there are five “numbers” in hummus and although all of them have no known adverse effects I still don't feel comfortable eating them with names I can't even pronounce. I found this great explanation "a food additive is any substance that is not normally consumed as a food in itself and is not normally an ingredient, but which is allowed to be there if it fulfills a technological function in the final food". For the full article click here.

Cooked Chickpeas, Vegetable Oil (Canola), Sesame Seed Paste, Garlic, Lemon Juice, Vinegar, Salt, Sugar, Herbs and Spices,
296 Food Acids
330 citric acid
415 Xanthan gum
466 Sodium carboxymethylcellulose
1412 Distarch phosphate

It turns out that both homemade and store bought hummus are great on the sodium and sugar front.

So what do you think? Perhaps homemade hummus is worth a try? We love it in our house and when I get a bit more organised I plan to try and roast vegetables to add to it, making it even more healthy.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Thermolina's Printable Labels

I've been popping around all the different Thermomix pages and let me tell you there are some very busy people putting me to shame. I'm not sure if I'm going to get time to make some Christmas goodies in my Thermomix to share with friends but it makes me feel better that at least I have some labels to use should I manage it.

Those said people are making cookies, fudge, chutney, jam, spice mix, body scrub, lip balm - it's never ending what people are whipping up in their Thermomix!

If you are one of those organised people please help yourself to my labels. And if you get time send me some pics I would love to see your creations.

Here is the link: Thermolina's Printable Labels

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Thermomix: 6 Days In Review

A big welcome to Sally McClinton who has kindly agreed to tell us what she thinks about her Thermomix on day six of owning it. From Sally:

Now, cooking does not interest me. My husband did all the grocery shopping and cooking until we emigrated to Melbourne, Australia last year and now it seems these responsibilities are down to me. How did that happen? 

After reading up on the new TM5 (after the recent press reports) and after having my demo, I decided to purchase one, purely because I think it would make my life easier. The 20 day delivery period came and went and then last Thursday (6 weeks after ordering) it arrived!  It’s been a long time since I’ve been this excited over a major purchase.

I’ve had it six days now, and have used it more than once a day and even my husband is converted after making mayonnaise in 5 seconds (his comment was it’s the best mayonnaise he has ever tasted) and butter in 10 minutes. 

My Thermomix benefits so far are:
-   I no longer dread all the preparation like chopping and weighing
-   I use far less pots and pans
-   I create hardly any mess and there is minimal washing up because Thermomix does the majority of the prep and cooking for me
-   I can set it going and go off and play with the kids - no risk of anything burning due to forgetfulness!
-   Everything I have made so far has been absolutely gorgeous.

In six days I have made 17 things in the Thermomix all of which have been delicious. The favourites so far are mayonnaise, Thai chilli chicken and basil, meatballs in tomato sauce, butter and the buttermilk produced from the butter was used for scones which are the lightest, fluffiest scones I’ve ever had. But the poached eggs, Thermomix is worth it just for poached eggs!

My Sunday evenings of meal planning for the week ahead have got sooooooooo much easier (and more interesting), it’s exciting flicking through The Basic Cookbook trying to decide what to make.  

I hope those of you still waiting for your delivery are getting excited, it’s well worth the wait, and take heed of Thermolina’s ‘A Survival Guide To Waiting 6-8 weeks For Your Thermomix’, you definitely need to start collecting jars!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Cod With Citrus Butter

For dinner tonight we had Cod With Citrus Butter from The Basic Cook Book (I used guided cooking).
It was delicious! To be honest I never cook fish so this was a bit out of my comfort zone. 

Two out of my three kids weren't very happy though - but I made them try everything on their plate. It may take them a while to adjust to such wholesome and tasty food! 

Even though I cook from scratch and consider myself to be a competent cook the Thermomix is teaching me a thing or two!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Poached Shredded Chicken

Poached Shredded Chicken has fast become one of my families favourite recipes - we all love it in our sandwiches! The recipe was given to me by Clare, another Thermomix consultant in my team and I'm so glad she shared it. 

If you've got fussy eaters that don't like green stuff try reducing the herbs and getting them used to it in their sandwiches, then very slowly up the herbs until you get back to the original recipe - oh yes that is what I'm doing!

I usually make a 500g batch and it lasts my family of five a couple of days of sandwiches. Omit the almonds for school lunches. 

6 sprigs parsley 
6 chives or 2 spring onions
6 mint leaves
2 celery stalks
1 clove garlic
Handful natural almonds
100g to 500g chicken breast or thigh cubed into 5cm pieces
Mayonnaise to taste
Lemon juice to taste

Place parsley, chives or spring onions, and mint into mixing bowl and chop 3 sec / speed 6. Scrape down sides of mixing bowl with spatula.
Add celery stalks and almonds and chop 3 sec / speed 5.
Transfer into a bowl and set aside.
Place garlic in bowl and chop 3 sec / speed 7
Add water (see below for quantity) to mixing bowl and cook
5 min / 100°C / speed 1.
Insert simmering basket into mixing bowl and place chicken inside.
Ensure chicken is covered in water and cook:
100g chicken / 1000g water / 6 min / 100°C / speed 2
200g chicken / 1200g water / 8 min / 100°C / speed 2
500g chicken / 1500g water / 10 min / 100°C / speed 2
Ensure chicken is cooked through.
Cool chicken in poaching liquid as this helps it stay moist.
Remove simmering basket with aid of spatula.
Pour out the liquid from mixing bowl.
Place cooked chicken into mixing bowl. 
Shred chicken 7-10 sec / reverse / speed 4.
Add the herb, celery and almond mix to mixing bowl.
Add mayonnaise and a squeeze of lemon to taste.
Mix 5 Sec / reverse / speed 4.