Thursday, May 20, 2010

Baba Ganoush

I'm no expert at this, but here's my attempt at Baba Ganoush, a hummus-like dip made from cooked eggplant. Curiously, a baba ganoush recipe was requested by my aunt, who has recently shared with me that she doesn't think she will ever follow my recipes exactly. I guess I can't blame her, because I'm the same way, but why then, I wonder, does she make special requests for me to feature a dish? Is it for the pictures?

Often served with pita chips, bell pepper strips, and other veggies, it's loaded with vitamins and essential nutrients. Tahini is a good source of calcium, protein, B vitamins, and essential fatty acids. Eggplant is a great source of antioxidents (disease-fighters), and the skin contains Nasunin. This is a potent antioxidant and free radical scavenger that has been shown to protect cell membranes from damage. Knowing this, I did add about half of the not-so-charred skin back into my ganoush. The addition provided a bit of smokey flavor and a bit of texture.
The Stuff:
  • baking sheet
  • blender or food processor
The Edibles:
  • 1 medium-small eggplant (mine was about 1 pound)
  • 1 T. tahini (roasted sesame paste)
  • 1/2 tsp. lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic, minced (or the equivalent in jarred or powdered)
  • sprinkle of chile powder
  • generous shake of ground coriander
  • 1 T. dried parsley or cilantro leaves
  • optional: 1 T. olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
The Making:
  1. Preheat broiler to high. Use a fork to prick eggplant a few times; place on a baking sheet and set directly under broiler to crisp/char skin of eggplant. This can also be done over a charcoal grill or using the stovetop of a gas stove. Watch carefully and turn occassionally in order to evenly char.
  2. Change oven temperature to 375 and roast eggplant in the oven for 20 to 30 minutes, or until they're completely soft. You can test the softness by poking plant with a paring knife; if you have no resistence, your eggplant is done.
  3. Remove from oven and let cool.
  4. Slice the eggplant in half and scrape use a spoon or fork to scoop out the pulp. Puree the pulp in a blender or food processor with the other ingredients until smooth.
  5. Taste, and season with salt, pepper, and additional lemon juice, if desired. Chill for a 3 hours for best results.

1 comment:

  1. For the pictures. Definitely. :)