The only thing I made in this ensemble is the hummus. Okay, I did partake in flavouring the chicken too. But, the rest was out of a bottle or was ready made. Having said that, the thing that made everything just bind together and bring the flavours intertwined is the hummus.
Hummus is a simple and easy dish to make. If you are throwing a party, you can make loads of this and stash some turkish bread in baskets for perfect party bites or starters.
1/2 packet chickpeas (you can use canned ones, but I just prefer the real deal)
3 cloves of garlic
2 tbsp lemon juice
Extra virgin olive oil
Soak your chickpeas overnight or at least 3 hours in a pot of water.
Dish out the water you soaked the chickpeas and fill in your pot with new water to boil the chickpeas. The level of water should be slightly more than the level of chickpeas
Boil boil boil for about 30mins or so with the lid on, till your chickpeas are soft and easy to mash. Don’t be alarmed if your water has reduced. No need to add more water.
Towards the last 2mins of boil, I add in the garlic into the pot just to steam it a little.
Once your chickpeas is ready, blitz the chickpeas with all the garlic. Add lemon juice and olive oil. Add the water from the chickpeas to lubricate the blending process.
The amount of olive oil varies from 3 tbsp to 1/2 cup. You just add the oil as you go on till the blitz results is a silky looking hummus
You can serve the hummus with more olive oil and toasted pine nuts and cayenne pepper. Or, you can just eat it just like that.
The middle eastern recipe calls for the use of Tahini. I have never used it because getting this was a little difficult. Fret not. The hummus tastes just as delicious without it.
For my kebab… I really used left over grilled chicken that I shredded and pan fried till golden brown with a little salt and pepper. I added 2 big spoons of hummus onto my wholemeal wrap, english spinach, grated mozzarella cheese, black olives, the chicken and nando’s peri-peri sauce. What happened after was almost poetry because the motion of me wrapping it up into a fat roll and bringing it to my mouth and taking a big juicy bite off this….ohh… All I can say is that, it was super yum!! Almost tastes like the kebabs you get from a middle eastern stall. *pats on my shoulder*
Trust me, this is easy peasy. I do cheat a little. Because I use ready made puff pastry sheets. But really, it does save me a LOT of time. And in the end of the day, it’s how it tastes that really counts, doesn’t it?
You’re welcome to substitute the bacon with minced chicken or even make it without meat if you’d like that. It really is a matter of personal preference. Feel free to tweak the recipe as you like. Before you get started make sure you have a non stick muffin pan. I used a 7 x 2.5cm cup size to make this. Personally I feel if the tart is any smaller, you will not be able to savour the filling just as much. And if it’s any bigger than this, it’s no longer a “mini”. Having said that, I’m not going to judge if you make it any bigger or smaller. Maybe, bigger is better? You tell me, ok?
2~3 puff pastry sheets (1 sheet typically can make 9 tarts for a 2.5cm cup size)
2 tbsp of olive oil
1 whole garlic, chopped fine
2 cups of diced mushrooms
1~2 cups of diced bacon (or any meat of your choice)
1/2 cup of cream (if you want to skim on the cream, you can also use evaporated milk – I did!)
2 tsp of italian mixed herbs (dried)
Salt to taste
Grated cheddar cheese (as topping)
Cut your pastry sheets into 9 squares (it’s ok if your squares are not perfect. I doubt anyone would notice)
Grease your muffin pan before carefully placing your squared sheets into it and lightly molding it into a cup. The corners of the squares will be slightly out of the pan. If the corners are touching the adjacent tart, it means your squares are too big for the pan -resize!
Heat oil in the pan and start by adding garlic and fry till it’s a light golden shade. Add the mushrooms and bacon till they’re almost cooked. Add the cream, salt, mixed herbs and pepper (optional). Turn off the flame as soon as your cream starts to simmer and set your pan aside
In a separate bowl, beat your eggs with salt. The amount of salt you add should be slightly lesser than how much you would normally season it. Once it’s beaten, add in your creamy mushrooms and bacon into this bowl and mix it well
Probably a good time to turn on the oven now and preheat it at 200 degC
Scoop your creamy eggy mixture into each cup, filling it only almost full this is because filling does rise when you bake. Lastly, top the filling with grated cheddar cheese.
Once you’re done, bake your tarts at 180 degC for 25~30mins till your tarts turn golden brown (or when your kitchen is filled with the baked cheese scent). You can serve the tarts for tea as it is, or with a side of salad as an entree for dinner.