Bacon Cheeseburger Hummus

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What is Bacon Cheeseburger Hummus?

Bacon cheeseburger hummus blends together the mediterannean flavors of zesty chickpeas with the taste of the all-American cheeseburger. Chickpeas are processed until smooth with lemon juice, tahini and spices then topped with ground beef, cheese, bacon bits, tomatoes and onions. The dip is best served with toasted pita bread for a savory snack or nice appetizer for any party.

Where’d It Come From?

Hummus is a middle eastern food with countries who debate passionately for the claim to its origin. The most notably public message having been communicated through a 23,000-pound bowl of hummus – which landed Lebanon in the Guinness Book of Records (this involved a “hummus war” of sorts, more on that later).

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Pasadena, CA has claimed itself as the birthplace of the cheeseburger. Of course, the cheeseburger is a variation of the hamburger, which can be traced back to various countries across history.

Origins of the Cheeseburger

To properly chronicle the birth of the cheeseburger, we must first dig into the history of the hamburger. Have a seat kiddos because we are taking this all the way back to the 1st Century AD. The place was Rome and the dish was called Isicia Omentata – minced meat combined with pepper, pine nuts, garum and wine. Ancient Romans would chill out in communal baths with olive leaves on their heads, munching on these Roman-style burgers. And yes, I just made that last part up.

The hamburger has shown up in many other variations and locations throughout history – as Steak Tartare eaten by the Mongols in the 13th Century AD, Hamburg Sausage in London circa the 1700s, Hamburger Charlie’s meatball between bread concoction in 1885, and White Castle’s humble beginnings in the early 1900s – to name a few.

Finally, in 1925, cheese made its first known appearance as a hamburger topping (allegedly, of course). Lionel Sternberger was running his father’s diner (The Rite Spot) in Pasadena, California when the idea came to fruition. Sternberger claimed to have been the first to place cheese over a patty inside a bun – a creation he named the Cheese Hamburger.

Origins of Hummus

Hummus is made from two key ingredients – chickpeas and tahini. Chickpeas has been said to be one of the first legumes to be cultivated, dating back 10,000 years in Turkey. While tahini, a sesame paste, has been documented in Arabic cookbooks as early as the 13th Century.

The combination of the aforementioned ingredients to produce hummus has been cited in various biblical texts such as the Hebrew Bible. Others say its origins lie in Nepal or northern India. More recently in 2008, a hummus war erupted between Lebanon and Israel. While the Lebanese government’s petition to the EU to officially deem hummus a Lebanese dish proved ineffective, they found a way to gain this recognition through the Guinness Book of World Records. After some back and forth “cook-offs” between Lebanon and Israel that resulted in several satellite dishes of hummus, Lebanon got the last word in 2010 with its record 11-ton dish of hummus. The plate created for the hummus also broke records at nearly 24 feet in diameter.

Regardless of whether this world record serves as any indication of hummus’ true origins, it’s clear that this dish is a symbol of tradition and patriotism for many.

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How’s It Made?

Makes: 4 servings  | Active prep/cook time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 (15-oz) can of chickpeas / garbanzo beans

  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice

  • ¼ cup tahini

  • 1 garlic clove, minced

  • 2 tbs olive oil

  • 1 tsp cumin

  • 1 tsp onion powder

  • 3 tbs water

  • ½ lb ground beef

  • 4 slices of bacon

  • ½ tomato – chopped

  • ¼ onion – chopped

  • ¼ cup grated cheddar cheese

  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • Pinch of paprika

  • Pita bread

Instructions:

  1. In a food processor, combine lemon juice and tahini – process for 1 minute. Scrape the sides and process for an additional 30 seconds.

  2. Add olive oil, garlic, cumin, onion powder, and ½ tsp salt – process for 30 seconds, scrape sides, then process for another 30 seconds.

  3. Drain chickpeas and add half to your food processor. Process for 1 minute, scrape sides and process for 1 to 2 more minutes or until smooth. If the mixture seems too thick, gradually add water until it reaches your desired consistency.

  4. Season ground beef with salt and pepper and cook in a pan. Drain grease.

  5. Cook bacon until crispy then chop into bits.

  6. Pour hummus into a bowl and top with ground beef, bacon, tomatoes, onions and cheese – then sprinkle with paprika. Serve with toasted pita bread.

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