It might go back to my days living in Central Pennsylvania when garbanzo beans were marketed in cans as “salad bar peas” that left me ever longing for people who understood the mighty chickpea. Those people might be Baba Foods (, based in San Diego but just recently bringing their fine dips and spreads to our Farmers Markets (at least Saturdays and Wednesdays). If you’ve ever hungered for yummy hummus, they’ll scratch that itch, especially since they offer so many varieties, from traditional to avocado-cilantro to a chipotle that builds its burn slowly but surely.

Somehow creamy-smooth yet still clearly ground from garbanzo, it’s hard to stop eating these dips once you begin. The good news, of course, is that the chickpea is full of fiber, low in fat, and packed with protein, plus numerous other minerals, if all the claims can be believed. So you get to snack flavorfully away without too much guilt. Assuming those pita chips are baked and not fried, of course.


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