Clue: It is a velvety, rich and smoky dip!
Some of you might be guessing Hummus.
Well, close but it’s not.
According to Wikipedia, Baba Ganoush means pampered papa. Imagine going up to your guest and saying “Would you like to have some pampered papa?” 😉
Pampered papa…err I mean Baba Ganoush is a very popular mezze in the middle east. This is something that they eat very often, just like hummus.
Baba Ganoush is made by roasting eggplants. The eggplant skin is then removed and the eggplants is mashed with ingredients like tahini and lemon juice. I added some garlic in the Bana Gaba Ganoush as I like the presence of the garlic. Purists say that garlic does not have a place in Baba Ganoush and it should only be added in hummus but then again, rules can be bended, right? If it tastes good, why not! Although I personally used lemon juice in the recipe, I have seen other recipes that used a small amount of yogurt. I am presuming this adds a nice tang to this dip.
Traditionally, the eggplant is grill over a hot coal or an open flame until its skin is well charred. This obviously gives the Baba Ganoush a nice smoky flavor but seriously how do you even start a burning coal when you are living in an apartment? Let’s not alarm the neighbours and just roast the eggplant in the oven, shall we? Works just as well..
Baba Ganoush is typically served with pita bread and raw vegetables. It goes well with chips too. Prior to serving, you can drizzle more olive oil over the dip, but I was trying to save some calories, so I omitted the extra olive oil. Why save the calories you may ask? Well, there was cheesecake waiting!!
Even though Baba Ganoush is commonly known as an appetizer, it also makes a great spread for your sandwiches. You can also use Baba Ganoush to top your canapés for your cocktail parties. Versatile much, you pampered papa!
- 1 large eggplant, cut in half
- 3 tbsp Olive oil
- 1 tbsp tahini
- 1 garlic clove
- 1-2 tbsp lemon juice
- ½ tsp cayenne pepper
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- Parsley leaves for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
- Cut a few slits in the skin of the eggplant.
- Sprinkle the eggplant flesh with salt and let it sit for a few minutes to "sweat out" it's bitterness, then dab dry with a paper towel
- Place the eggplant halves, flesh side down, on a lightly oiled baking sheet then drizzle with 1 tbsp of olive oil. Bake in the 425 degree F heated-oven for 30-40 minutes or until the eggplant fully softens through. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.
- When the eggplant has cooled, scoop the flesh out and transfer to a food processor. Discard the eggplant skins.
- Add the tahini, garlic, lemon juice,seaoning and 2 tbsp of olive oil. Run the food processor until you achieve a nice creamy puree. Taste and adjust spices to your liking.
- Transfer the baba ganoush spread to a small bowl and just before serving, top the baba ganoush with a drizzle of olive oil and parsley.
- Serve with pita bread, tortilla, chips or vegetables sticks.
Check out my hummus recipes below