My Hummus Place Habit

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The West Village is not an easy place to grab a cheap lunch. Don’t get me wrong: it’s a wonderful place to grab lunch. There’s Market Table, ‘ino, Pearl Oyster Bar, The Spotted Pig, Barbuto, etc, etc, and so on. But the operative word in my first sentence was “cheap” and while all of those places have wonderful food, if I ate at one of them every day, I’d be broke. Which is why, upon moving here two years ago, I was in search of a place I could visit on a weekly basis, where I could eat quickly and cheaply and relatively healthfully, a place that was convenient to my apartment and convenient to the coffee shop where I do most of my work (Joe). The place I settled upon was Hummus Place.

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A $5 Dinner from the Corner Bodega [Homemade Hummus with Homemade Pita]

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There are moments when I don’t want to plan a dinner, but I don’t want to order in either. In those moments, I think about quick solutions: what if I buy some bread and make an egg salad sandwich? Why don’t I heat up leftover French onion soup? Or–in recent days–why not make some polenta?

Tonight, coming back from a day in the city, I craved hummus. Not the kind you buy already made, I wanted to make it myself. I also wanted homemade pita bread. Every time I have hot, homemade pita bread (like the kind you get at Snack Taverna, for example) it’s so much better than dried-out packaged pita bread, I vow to make my own from now on. But I never do. I tried it once with whole wheat flour and didn’t love it. Tonight, though, would be different. Before getting to my apartment, I popped into the corner bodega (Craig calls it that, I used to just call it “the corner store”) and bought the following:

– a can of chickpeas

– packets of yeast (yes, they have dried yeast at our corner bodega)

– a lemon

That was it. I had garlic and olive oil at home and flour too and that’s all I’d need. The grand total? A little more than $5. Not bad for a Sunday night dinner.

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