Babaghanouj (in Arabic: baba = “daddy” ghanouj = “the one who spoils”, also spelled baba ghanouj, baba ghanoush, baba ghannoug) is a sibling of Hummus in the Mezza Family: they often come together. But this time, babaghanouj is most commonly served with one topping, fresh mint.
Estimated time: 30-40min
Ingredients: 2 large dark-purple eggplants (the darker the color, the better), 4 to 5 tablespoons or 50g of tahini (aka. sesame seed paste), ½ lemon, 1 garlic clove, olive oil, salt, ½ teaspoon of cumin (optional)
1. Poke holes in the 2 eggplants with a fork
2. Place the eggplants on the grill, in the oven at 400F, or over a gas flame. After 15min, one side should be well cooked and the flesh very tender. Turn over the eggplants and let them grill on all sides for 10min. After 30min, if the eggplants are not soft enough, keep on heating them until the skin is easy to peel off
3. Peel the eggplants under a cold tap and discard the skin. Remove the heads and cut them in half. Allow the eggplants to cool to room temperature
4. Then slice each half into 5 long strings and remove all of the seeds you can find (many are hidden in the flesh)
5. Place the pieces of eggplant into a food processor with salt and 1 garlic clove chopped into small pieces. Whizz the mixture into a smooth purée
6. Press ½ lemon and add the juice to the mixture; add 4 tablespoons of tahini; and finally add ½ teaspoon of ground cumin (optional); process the mixture
Taste – If the mixture is too liquid, add a little bit of tahini, but be careful not to overdo the tahini; you only need a little to bring out the flavor of the eggplants. **What to look for when you taste?** Make sure you taste the lemon juice & eggplant. Charring the eggplants on a gas flame or charcoal grill gives the baghanouj a distinctive smoky flavor.
7. Transfer the mixture into a small plate or shallow bowl and garnish with fresh mint (whole or chopped leaves)
The Finale: drizzle over olive oil and eat with Arabic/pita bread.
** Feel free to contact me or leave a comment if you have any questions about the recipe