Why do you make such a fuss about Humus” rebuked me George Bahu the welder from Jaffa “It is only a paste, that you wipe in the morning to fill the belly till evening when you go home to have real food.”
He is right of course. And very wrong.
There is no doubt that Humus (Chickpeas) is a paste, spread, or opaque dip.
And at the same time it gives the impression that it managed to gain the hearts (mouths, stomachs, minds, souls) of the majority people.
Humus is the bond between Arabs and Jews, between Zionists and Palestinians and constitutes the true infrastructure on which (if and when) true peace will rein from the Euphrates to the Nile.
Humus is indeed ready to adopt the peace role in the Middle East, since to a great extent humus is at the root of human culture, and it is no wonder that an increasing number of people are becoming addicted to it.
It may seem too big a job for this lentil that is less than a half centimeter in size,
but if one recognizes its ability one discovers that it can make nitrogen available. So why is this important (for us and the animal and vegetable kingdoms)? It just so happens that nitrogen is one of the bases of amino acids which are themselves the base of protein, and protein is of course the base of everything.
Were we not to have sources for protein from the animal kingdom and no decent sources of lentils, we would have a problem. This problem was resolved 11,000 years ago in the Middle East by domesticating the lentil and eating it in all its forms – beans, humus and peas.
In this way farmers like us who decided not to rely on the whims of the skies and the readily available animals to hunt,
decided to push back the desert borders and nurture the dairy herds that provide us with milk without having to expend wasteful energy to turn them into meat.
We survived nicely increasing the chick pea fields with more irrigation brought from the channels of the great rivers into the deserts of the Middle East to create the fertile crescent.
This is the humus, in all its various tastes and forms that we have been eating for at least 10,000 years. Did culture precede humus or vice versa?
We shall try here to resolve this matter. The domestication of the lentil constitutes the humus and wheat revolution.
There is another very important factor : in the chickpeas there is tryptophan. In the domesticated chickpeas there is 3 times as much.
And tryptophan is being synthesized in the brain and create more Serotonin. Serotonin makes us happy. Well done.
The calmness makes us behave socially. The Humus is the cement that a healthy society is build upon. As we know all too well in the middle east.
Never have started a war in a place of Humus – these are always islands of happiness and silent devoted cooperation.
So this is the story of in a chick peas. A true energy food that prevails peace and social behavior.
So in the end I must go back to George and his rebuke: “Why do you make such a fuss about Humus, IT is only a paste, that you wipe in the morning to fill the belly till evening when you go home to have real food.”
He is right of course. And totally wrong.