I believe strongly that advertising at it's purest form is to help the end consumer become more informed about the products and services they purchase. I am happy to post the second VCL Sponsor in the Spotlight post by Ariel's Hummus.
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Insight provided by Ariel, Owner
Ariel at his stand in Portland, Maine.
Visit his Facebook page for contact information.
1. Why did you start making your own hummus?
Ever since I moved here a few years ago I’ve been looking everywhere for good Hummus, the authentic, creamy, and fresh kind I’m used to from Israel. Unfortunately, I came up empty handed. So I decided to do it myself.
I started making Hummus at home for me and my wife. At some point friends and family started asking that we bring Hummus to dinners and others events. One thing led to another and now we’re in farmers markets and stores!
2. Can you talk about the process of finding the best hummus recipe and any difficulties you had?
To make really good Hummus you need really good ingredients. In Israel and across the Middle East the right ingredients are quite easy to come by, but in the US and particularly in Maine, these ingredients are simply unavailable. What I did in order to overcome this challenge is tested an enormous number of ingredients that are sold locally, like chickpeas, until I found the right quality and flavor. As to chickpeas, let’s just say that unlike us humans, not all chickpeas are born equal.
What different types of hummus do you sell? Are they all vegan-friendly?
Currently, we sell 3 types of Hummus:
- The Original: simply Hummus.
- The Original with Extra Goodness On Top: Hummus topped with chickpeas and olive oil.
- Chipotle Cilantro (aka C&C): Hummus with finely minced Chipotle Peppers and Fresh Cilantro - this is actually our invention.
And, yes, it’s all vegan-friendly!
3. What hummus flavor is your “best seller”?
Although many people are crazy about the flavor of our C&C Hummus, the best seller is “The Original with Extra Goodness On Top”. The reason I think people love it so much is because it is the most authentic tasting Hummus. Topping Hummus with chickpeas cooked in traditional spices and olive oil is the way it’s served in the Middle East.
4. Where can I buy Ariel’s Hummus?
And please excuse me the blunt marketing effort, but if you want to get our Hummus at your local store please feel free to pass along our contact information. We’ll come by the store with a few samples and then, hopefully, you’ll be able to get it close to home.
5. Are you developing any other flavors to sell in the near future?
Of course. We have a few delicious and unique flavors up our sleeves, but we would like to keep it as a surprise for our fast-growing and avid customers. No worries though, we won’t be keeping them waiting in suspense for too long.
6. Do you have any favorite recipes or ways to eat hummus that you could recommend?
Traditionally, Hummus is eaten as a meal. It’s served in a bowl, typically topped with chickpeas, olive oil, and other garnish, and eaten with Pita bread and an assortment of vegetables or salads on the side.
Israelis are actually very particular about the way they eat Hummus, mainly about the way in which the Pita is dipped in the Hummus. This might sound silly, but there’s even a word for it in Hebrew. The word is pronounced Lenagev, which literally means “to wipe”. So the way one is expected to eat Hummus in Israel is to tear a bite-size piece of Pita bread with their hands, dip it in the Hummus while moving the piece of Pita clockwise in a smooth and almost circular motion, which constitutes the act of “wiping”, and then eat it, of course. Then, when the Hummus is almost finished, Israelis use the Pita to “wipe” the bowl completely clean.