A Blog by the Editor of The Middle East Journal

Putting Middle Eastern Events in Cultural and Historical Context

Monday, October 26, 2009

Food Fight: Guinness Hummus, Tabbouleh Records Broken

I haven't gotten into the food fight over who owns hummus yet, with Lebanon incensed that it is sometimes portrayed as an Israeli dish, but I'm glad to see that one side effect of the debate is that the Guinness record for hummus and tabbouleh has been broken in Beirut. Of course, Hizbullah is being all triumphalist about it, but maybe with a trace of previously undiscovered humor.
Oh let's just settle this: who makes the best hummus? I do.

Now, if you want a real debate, where did baklava come from? That fight not only brings in the Arabs and Israelis, but Greeks, Turks and Armenians too. You can't get much more intense than that.

UPDATE: Okay, I can be funny, but Qifa Nabki wins the round: Israel Unveils Plan for Massive Hummus-Themed Resort. I know when I'm in the presence of a pro. Try this:
Mr. Cohen said that there were also plans to incorporate other “ancient Israeli dishes like zaatar, couscous, shawarma, and falafel” into the park’s attractions. One ride that is currently under development, Falafel Mountain, would send thrill-seekers on an eight-minute roller-coaster ride, tunneling inside a giant falafel the size of a football stadium.

“All the materials would be organic and edible, which are obviously not suitable for building,” admits Mr. Cohen. “But we are confident that a new breakthrough technology developed by an Israeli company will enable us to turn the falafel mix into a kind of durable cement,” he said, adding quickly, “It would still be edible, though.”

The project is sure to inflame Lebanese-Israeli tensions, not least because of the location of the site chosen for Hummus Land: the Shebaa Farms, a disputed twelve-mile strip on the border of the two countries.

“Israel is a crowded country,” said Mr. Cohen. “There is no room for a project on this scale. So why not make use of Shebaa? It’s not like we’re ever going to give it back to the Lebanese, the poor bastards.”

If only we could turn the entire Middle East conflict into a food fight . . .


LJ Marczak said...

AlWatan had a picture of the winning dish and chefs.


Michael Collins Dunn said...

I saw the pic and decided against piracy. Check the update: the blog Qifa Nabki did a better take than I did (Israel builds HummusLand in the Shebaa Farms).