It was Billy who made the first humus I ever tried… Half English half Cypriot he had a great passion for theatrical cooking with a great bag, ingredients randomly mixed and every pan in the kitchen being used in the process. For that reason it was safer to watch from a distance that, God forbid, trying to help…

So Billy was making his humus… Hefty amounts of Spanish onions were roughly chopped, garlic crushed, sun-dried tomatoes soaked, lemons juiced. The chickpeas at that point were scattered all over the kitchen as they somehow managed to escape during the overnight soaking. Clearly the container was not big enough…neither was the pot used to cook the peas.

In this chaos Billy stayed calm and focused. And unaware the war zone he left behind presented to us his bowl of salmon pink paste… Oh my Lord, it was delicious! Smooth, velvety, slightly nutty with a hint of acidity and sweetness from sundried tomatoes. I grin like a child every time the mouthful of humus brings the memories of the madness of the Billy’s kitchen.


  • 400g tin of chickpeas
  • 100ml light tahini paste
  • 1 lemon juice only
  • 3 cloves of garlic crushed
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 pinches of smoke paprika
  • 2 tbsp Greek-style yoghurt (optional)


Blitz the chickpeas until it reaches the required coarseness. Add all the ingredients (with the exception of the yoghurt) and blend until the mixture is smooth. Stir in yoghurt and taste for seasoning. Add more salt if required. You can use olive oil instead of yoghurt if preferred.