Recipe for Baba Ganoush – a Middle Eastern Eggplant based dip, which is usually a part of a mezze platter
The first time I came across Baba Gannoush ( Pronounced “Ga-NOOSH”) was at Basha, a Greek restaurant in Rochester, NY-where they had accidentally brought this onto our table instead of Hummus. One taste of the stuff and I knew that it was surely smoked brinjal and not chickpeas that I was tasting.
To prepare a vegetarian mezze platter, here are the recipes
- Hummus – Carrot White Bean hummus | Pumpkin hummus | Turmeric green mango hummus
- Baba Gannoush
- Mutabal – this is another eggplant based dip but slightly different from Baba Ganoush in flavour
- Labneh – Whisk together a tablespoon or two of extra virgin olive oil into a cup of hung yogurt. Season with a pinch of salt and za’atar or sumac.
- Pita bread / Pita chips
- Tabbouleh – Mix in couscous or any other grain like cooked quinoa or millet with lots of finely chopped parsley and mint. Stir in chopped tomatoes, lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper.
Here are some more roasted eggplant recipes
- Roasted or charred eggplant finds its way into quite a few recipes, and not just Arabic. The famous Punjabi Baingan Bharta is another dish you can prepare using the flesh of a roasted eggplant.
- Roasted eggplant is mixed with spices and tamarind pulp to make an intensely flavourful curry called Gothsu that is served with savoury pongal.
- Or how about this roasted eggplant soup?
- Roasted eggplant pairs with yogurt in the simple raita, that makes an easy accompaniment to any Indian meal.
Baba Ganoush is a classic Mediterranean eggplant dip. It’s silky, smokey and bursting with flavour. Here goes my version…
- 1 eggplant large variety ~350 grams
- 2 tbsp sesame seeds toasted (or use 1 tablespoon Tahini)
- 4 cloves garlic
- 2 tbsp yogurt thick
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper freshly ground
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 - 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tbsp finely chopped parsely
- To prepare Baba Ganoush, start by roasting the eggplant. Roasting it on a direct flame or the grill gives the best smokey taste.Place the brinjal on a medium flame, and rotate regularly so that the skin gets evenly blistered and charred. It will take about 10-12 min for the entire brinjal to get roasted and soft from within. However you can roast it on a lightly greased baking sheet by slitting it in half lengthwise at 350 F. I prefer to broil rather than bake, for that browning effect.
- Peel off the blistered skin, chop roughly and keep aside.
- Assembling the ingredients: In a blender, roughly grind the roasted sesame seeds. Then add the chopped roasted brinjal and all other ingredients except parsely/ coriander and olive oil. Blend to a smooth paste.
- Serve: Remove the paste onto a shallow dish. Mix in the olive oil. Garnish with minced parsely / coriander and a swirl of some more olive oil.
Image credit – Shutterstock