This is You Won’t Regret It, a new weekly column featuring recommendations, tips, and unsolicited advice from the Mashable culture team.
People nowadays are under tremendous pressure to do everything themselves, whether it’s designing our own clothes, building our own internet or — good God — making our own lunch for work.
It’s too damn much. But forgive me if I add another task to the pile: You need to make your own hummus. No store-bought version, no matter how fancy the label is, can stand up to homemade.
For what it’s worth, I think most items can be purchased from the grocery store without any reduction in quality. Frozen pizza is always better than any homemade nonsense your friend made with bland homemade dough and their imagination. Supermarket ice cream is 100 percent superior to whatever sloppy bullshit you concocted with your overpriced Williams Sonoma ice cream maker. Your homemade fries have nothing on those little frozen bebés that come sprinkled with parmesan fairy dust. And why in the world would you spend the afternoon shopping for high-end brownie ingredients when you can down a pan made from Betty Crocker’s masterful powdered mix in one sitting?
But not hummus. There is simply no packaged version that gets it exactly right. Some of the brands out there are creamy, but lack that legendary light texture. Some get way too experimental with flavors. (Balsamic Caramelized Onion hummus? Come on. That’s a hamburger topping.)
I don’t blame the brands for mediocre hummus. It’s spectacularly hard to package and mass produce a food that just tastes best fresh. Whatever extras the brands include in their products — citric acid, potassium sorbate, crummy oils — dulls the chickpea flavor. Pretzels can only pick up so much of the slack.
Homemade hummus is the only way, because it’s not loaded down with preservative poison and because most recipes you’ll find on the internet do the job just fine. Plus, it requires few ingredients, most of which are cheap kitchen cabinet staples. I’m a huge fan of Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi’s recipe. It’s slightly more labor-intensive than others, but it’s absolutely worth it. Bonus: it uses ice water to maximize the sexxxy creaminess.
It’s time for you to step up your picnic game. If you have the audacity to bring raw vegetables to a picnic (too healthy/borderline unethical,) don’t double down on evil by bringing store-brand hummus. Take the extra time to make homemade hummus.
Your stomach — and those raggedy-ass carrots you’re serving — deserve so much more.
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