The Weary Shopper’s Lunch

This year, I simplified my holiday shopping plan and decided to make one big day of it. I also decided to make sure that “shop ’til you drop” was not my personal slogan for the day. So I made plans to stay upright by packing a good snack. When my energy started to wain at a local artisan fair, I put a pause on shopping, found a scenic place, and enjoyed my food with a thermos of tea.


The Holiday Shopping Snack Menu:

  • Red Lentil Hummus with Crackers, Veggies, & Pumpkin Seeds
  • Hot Herbal Tea

The Containers:

  • 1 partitioned container (or a regular container)
  • 1 tea thermos (or a reusable to-go cup)

Red Lentil Hummus with Crackers, Veggies, & Pumpkin Seeds:

  • 3/4 cup of red lentil hummus
  • 1 handful of pumpkin seeds
  • 1 handful of broccoli sprouts
  • 1 handful fo lentil sprouts
  • 4 small carrots (or one large carrot sliced up into sticks)
  • 1-2 servings of Mary’s Gone Crackers black pepper crackers
  • 1 pinch of paprika


  1. Scoop the hummus into a corner of your container. Sprinkle the seeds and paprika on top of the hummus.
  2. Neatly arrange the sprouts, carrots, and crackers in the rest of the available space in the container. However, do try to keep the crackers as far from the hummus as possible to minimize the risk of sogginess.


Recipe for Red Lentil Hummus:

(made the night before, and this recipe is for a one-week supply made in two batches)

  • 2 cups of dry red lentils
  • 2 sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped into small chunks (optional)
  • 6 cups of water or broth
  • 1/2 cup tahini
  • 2 lemons, juice
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 4-6 small cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • Assorted spices: cayenne, cumin, pepper, paprika


Sweet potatoes are optional in this recipe. I just happened to have two left and the whim to try them out. They added a nice note of sweetness to the hummus.


  1. Rinse the lentils in a mesh colander, and pour them into a large pot. Put the sweet potato chunks and water into the pot.
  2. Bring to a boil. Then reduce the heat, and simmer for 12-14 minutes. When the potatoes and lentils are tender, turn off the heat.
  3. If there is still a lot of water in the pot that has not cooked off, that’s ok. Allow the liquid to drain off scoop by scoop by using a slotted spoon to put them in a glass measuring bowl (4-6 cup capacity). You should have at least 4 cups of cooked lentils, but probably a little more.
  4. First Batch. In a food processor, blend half of tahini and lemon juice for 10-20 seconds. Scrape down the sides. Add half the oil and half the garlic, and blend again for 10-20 seconds.
  5. Pour in half the salt and half the lentils (about 2 cups of lentils) into the food processor, and process until the mixture is super creamy (about a minute). I recommend pausing two or three times to scrape down the sides and bottom.
  6. At this point, add spices. I kept the first batch pretty plain (more salt, pepper, a bit of cumin). In the second, I added lots of cayenne and some paprika, cumin, and pepper. I did it this way because I wanted a plain one that I could play with and change up throughout the week.
  7. Scoop that batch into containers.
  8. Second Batch. Repeat steps 4-7 above, using the rest of the ingredients.


After making all that hummus, I sat down to enjoy some with yesterday’s sprouts and a few cherry tomatoes.



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