I took most culinary innovations of the past decades with a stiff upper lip. When cereal makers began stuffing their products with freeze-dried fruit that looked like they belonged on the International Space Station, I remained quiet and dignified. When some mad food scientist spliced bacon and mayonnaise, I said not a word.
But hummus in a squeeze bottle? That’s blasphemy.
To be fair, I haven’t tried Zohan Hummus. To be fairer still, everything about it—from the already-stale pop culture reference to the bizarre pillow fight in its ad—seems designed to keep serious hummus connoisseurs away, and should therefore count, perhaps, as some sort of dialectical good. But first principles are first principles: No matter how delicious the paste or how convenient its mode of dispensation, squeezing hummus from a bottle is an abomination.
You see, in Israel, where I was born and where I received years of higher hummus education, one never simply states that one is about to eat hummus. When it comes to hummus, the correct verb is le’nagev, or to wipe. Tear a small piece of pita, introduce it to the plate at an approximate 50-degree-angle, and wipe the tasty paste with short, semi-circular motions. Such is the ritual—anything else is heresy.
To those of our readers whose proclivities demand that food be squeezable, bon appetit. Otherwise, for some serious hummus experience, please consider these guys.