Coming from Singapore where food that is cheap and good is easily available, moving to Stockholm was a bit of a culture shock, because its hard to get a great, cheap and filling meal for the same price. But that doesn’t mean that good and affordable food isn’t available, and I’m on a mission to find it. And so begins this ongoing segment – Måltid i Stockholm (Meals in Stockholm).
Bread dipped in a spread with oil, that is the beautiful simplicity of hummus.
Hummus is a dish from the Levant. The Levantine region includes present day Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine, Syria, and parts of southern Turkey.
The traditional Levant region (dark green and leafy green), regions sometimes included as the levant are in pale green (source)
Hummus is the arabic name for chickpeas and the complete name of the dish is hummus bi tahini which translates as Hummus and Tahini in english. The earliest records of the dish date back to the 13th century to cookbooks in Cairo (in present day Eygpt). Hummus is served with pita bread which is used to pick up the spread.
I had just arrived in Stockholm and colleagues from the Levant invited me a dinner to welcome me to the city. They chose an office favourite, hummus. And they chose hummus from a hipster Jewish eatery called Reggev Hummus.
The small location fits few tables but has a constant stream of customers so its one of those locations where you grab a meal and leave for a bar or pub to grab a drink.
And the food is simple. All the dishes are written on the board. Hummus here is food built on a chickpea base. Chickepea on its own with olive oil is fragrant and has a light sweet touch.
We had hummus with mushrooms and chicken (first and second picture respectively). The meat and mushroom changed the complexion of the dish, adding a richness on top of the light sweetness to the chickpeas.
Accompanying the dish was a minty dip to add a different, lighter dimension to the spread. The mint dip was useful because the pita and hummus became thick and heavy. The mint dip with its fresh, slight sour tone cut the richness so as to balance off the flavour.
Pita bread comes freshly baked and free-flow until you are full. All this sets you back around 90 SEK (less than 15 SGD or about 10 USD).
It’s not super cheap but it’s worth every calories and the crown.
ON THE MAP