Warm pita bread and hummus is like peanut butter and jelly, mac and cheese, or gin and dry vermouth- a match made in heaven! I stopped into The Meat House to pick up, well, meat… and was excited to see that someone was standing in the front of the store handing out free samples of something I assumed was delicious. It was Matt, one of the owners of this great local business and he was sampling his hummus and black bean dip.
He started telling me about their hummus/dips and how they’re made with all locally grown ingredients. The unique thing about their products is that they are all tahini-free. I guess there is a growing concern with people having sesame allergies and they have decided to perfect a hummus/dip recipe without using tahini. Thank goodness he was doing all of the talking because I was doing all of the eating. I tried each one of their wonderful varieties which included Roasted Red Pepper, Sun Dried Tomato, Garlic Breath, Garlic and Chives and their Spicy Black Bean Dip. They were all great but the Spicy Black Bean Dip is the one that really got my attention.
You could taste the cilantro and it was obvious that it was freshly made from the best local ingredients. Don’t let the word “spicy” fool you though. On a spice scale of 1-10, I give it about a 1.5 so if you’re not a fan of heat, this dip won’t leave your mouth in flames. When I got home, I tried it on all sorts of thing like pretzels, veggies, crackers, a spoon :) and I even put it on my turkey sandwich which was delish!
Matt and his wife Jennifer were bitten by the entrepreneurial bug and started this business in May of 2011. They have been long time supporters of the Schenectady farmers market and thought that it would be great to be involved somehow, but they weren’t quite sure how. Jennifer had attended a hummus and wine party about a year prior and thought that she could make hummus way better then any of the store bought varieties that were offered. She started playing around with recipes and discovered that she had quite the talent for making hummus. After her husband was laid off two years ago, all of the pieces came together and 3 Chicks and a P was born. First, let me say how cute the name is. It incorporates their whole family because they have two girls, so Jennifer and her daughters are the 3 chicks. Matt’s last name starts with a “P” and there you have it! I think the “P” could stand for Pretty awesome Products! They produce their hummus and dips at the Rotterdam Boys and Girls Club who just happen to revamp their kitchen so they have access to some of the latest and greatest equipment. Currently they are making their products 1-2 days a week, but this business is in addition to both of them working full time (Matt found an opportunity he couldn’t pass up. The lay off could have been a good thing though because if it never happened, they might not have had the catalyst they needed to start this business). So the dream of being a part of the Schenectady farmers market has come true because you can find them there every Sunday from 10-2. Local stores that carry their products are The Meat House in Clifton Park and Saratoga, King Brothers Dairy, Galway Market, Niskayuna food co-op, Gabe Farms in Guilderland and the Honest Weight food co-op in Albany.
Have a suggestion for a flavor? Let them know because they might make it for you. The Spicy Black Bean dip idea came from a customer of theirs and now it’s their #1 seller. Try it on loaded potato skins for a healthy snack or side dish. Not sure how healthy my version would be after the addition of bacon, butter and sour cream but the black bean dip would make it taste great! Looking to the future, they would like to expand their product line, acquire nutritional information and get into some major grocery stores. The main goal for these 3 chicks and a P is to have the business be big enough for their daughters to take over some day. I’d say they are off to a great start and I can’t wait to see what other flavors they come up with!
Check out their website at http://www.threechicksandap.com
**WIN** Three lucky Facebook fans will receive a FREE tub of hummus. Comment on the "Bite Me" Facebook page on how you use their products and 3 winners will be chosen. You can pick up your free hummus at the farmers market in Schenectady on Sundays from 10-2.