We are cooking a benefit dinner on January 24th for Sips & Suppers (along with 75 chefs cooking other dinners) in Washington DC, so we are testing out some dishes we want to serve. It just so happened that a dear friend came by today and dropped off a New Year’s present for us—a Blending Station Advance On-Counter Vita Mix. Phew! We don’t even have a microwave. So we whirled (and we mean whirled and twirled) up some hummus. MH manned the machine and when she hit a button the whole thing sounded like Apollo 12 and almost took off. CH, scaredy-cat, ran across the room to a far corner. But after 30 seconds the hummus was as smooth as silk. We topped it with ground lamb and onions perfumed with cinnamon, and pine nuts, then drizzled on some olive oil. We thank our friend for this newfangled contraption. It works real good.