Baba Ganoush

I have to make a confession. I don’t like hummus. I know big shock, how can I hate that creamy chickpea spread which seems to be ever popular wherever I look.

It doesn’t make sense honestly, I grew up with fresh hummus my mother would make on a fairly regular basis. She would make a huge quantity, whistle out a loaf of sour dough bread and see the hummus inside with the broken up bread pieces used to scoop up the stuff by the mouthful.

I would lap it up happily, however something changed. Perhaps its just what happens as one gets older, I also have a thing against blueberries and raspberries.

Whatever the reason I don’t touch hummus any more but I do still have an affinity for its cousin, Baba Ganoush. I think I love it more because it is made with eggplant and I will pretty much eat anything with eggplant in it.

Baba ganoush is pretty straight forward. You roast or grill an eggplant or two, blend the “meat” with a couple other ingredients and bam! you have a whole bowl of deliciousness.

There is also a very, very similar eggplant dish called mutabbal which uses anar seeds instead of cumin, it is said to be a spicier version of baba ganoush. There seems to be some confusion over which is which, some people might say that what I think of as baba ganoush is in fact mutabbal and vice versa.

I can’t figure out why this is but all I know for sure is my recipe has always been called baba ganoush by everyone I know. Baba ganoush is often served as meze, otherwise known as an appetizer. Pita bread or khubz ( type of flatbread) is served to eat it but vegetables can also be added to a platter.

This is the perfect finger food type dish to bring to a picnic or barbecue. You could also turn it into a light meal by adding some type of protein. Kebobs, grilled meats or tofu, shrimp or cold cuts would be perfect to make it a balanced meal.

This definitely reminds me of childhood and all the great Middle Eastern foods I was introduced to and still enjoy to this day.

Baba Ganoush
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2 Cups
 
Ingredients
  • 1 Large or 2 small eggplants
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil plus some for roasting eggplant
  • 3 Cloves garlic
  • 3 Tbsp tahini
  • 1 Lemon
  • 1 Tsp cumin
  • ½ Tsp cayenne or paprika
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Parsley, chopped
  • Mix of vegetables, flatbreads or crackers
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Poke eggplant all over and slather in olive oil.
  3. Bake for 30-45 minutes depending on size of eggplant.
  4. Rmove and place in a glass bowl, cover with cling wrap and wait to cool.
  5. Once cooled remove skin and add the inner meaty part to a food processor or blender.
  6. Add in all other ingredients except for parsley and vegetables.
  7. Blend until smooth. Taste and adjust the ingredients as needed, you may find you need more tahini or more spice it will depend on your preferences.
  8. Chill for a few hours or overnight. Serve with a mix of vegetables and crackers to dip.

Enjoy!

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