Hummus with ground beef & pine nuts

Fill the table with Mediterranean flavours. Just add a salad or zesty tabouleh, with rice or pitta bread.


  • 250 g (9 oz) good-quality minced (ground) beef
  • 125 ml (4 fl oz/½ cup) extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ large red onion, very finely diced
  • ¹/3 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 400 g (14 oz) tin chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 2 lemons, plus extra wedges, to serve
  • 2–3 garlic cloves, crushed to a paste with salt
  • 135 g (4¾ oz/½ cup) tahini paste
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
  • ½ cup flat-leaf (Italian) parsley leaves, shredded
  • Paprika and mild chilli flakes, to taste
  • Toasted pitta bread, to serve


Heat 60 ml (2 fl oz/¼ cup) of the olive oil in a saucepan over low–medium heat. Add the onion and cook gently for about 5 minutes until golden brown. Transfer to a bowl, add the cinnamon and set aside.

To make the hummus, place the chickpeas and 60 ml (2 fl oz/¼ cup) water in a food processor and blend until smooth. Add the juice of 1 lemon, the garlic paste, tahini and remaining olive oil. Season to taste with sea salt and black pepper. Spread the hummus over a large serving plate.

Place a frying pan over high heat. When the pan is hot, add the cooked onion, then the beef mince. Use the back of a fork to break up the mince as it cooks and season with salt. Cook for about 10 minutes until the mince begins to crisp, then add the pine nuts.

To serve, spoon the mince over the hummus, and sprinkle with the parsley, paprika and chilli flakes. Add a good grind of pepper and squeeze the juice of the remaining lemon over the top. Serve with lemon wedges and toasted pitta bread.

NOTES: First published in Neil’s cookbook Easy Weekends.

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