Eggplant Dip {Baba Ghanoush}

Last week I had two beautiful, purple eggplants that I bought at the farmers market. I knew that I wanted to make Baba Ganoush (Eggplant Dip) for my son’s first birthday party. It’s delicious, healthy and easy to make. A definite crowd pleaser!


Eggplant is used for many things, but one of my favorites is Baba Ghanoush (Baba Ganouj). It is a typical Lebanese mezza (appetizer) made from roasted eggplant, garlic, lemon and seasonings.  It was my lucky day because my Grandma was in town for my son’s 1st birthday and was able to show my sister and I how she makes Baba Ghanoush.  It was so fun to cook with my Grandma and learn from her.

When I did a little research on Baba Ghanoush I realized that it is made throughout the world and different in each country. In Lebanon it is typically made as an appetizer or a side to a main dish.  I have noticed a lot of variations of Baba Ghanoush.   It turned out perfect and was a big hit at the party.  We served it with pita bread and pita chips but it can also be served with vegetables such as cucumber, crackers or pretzels.  Perfect for dipping!

To start you will want to take your two eggplants and remove the green from around the neck of the eggplant, but leave the stem.  Place in a preheated hot oven until soft (30-35 minutes)…

Remove from oven and allow to cool off.  Remove the skin slowly with a knife or peeler while holding the stem…

Mash the pulp of the eggplant with a fork or place in food processor or blender then slowly beat in lemon juice alternately with tahini.  Crush garlic with salt and mix to a paste.  Blend into the eggplant mixture. Adjust salt and lemon juice to taste.

Pour into shallow serving dishes or platters and garnish with chopped parsley.  Serve with pita bread or pita chips.

Serves 3-4 as an appetizer

Prep time 10 minutes

Cook time 35-40 minutes

Ingredients

2 large eggplants (about 2 lbs)

about ¼ cup of lemon juice

cup lemon juice

4-5 tablespoons tahini

2-3 cloves of garlic (depending on how garlicy you like it)

1 ½ teaspoons salt

teaspoon salt

¼ cup finely chopped parsley for garnish

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Poke the eggplants a few times with a fork. Roast until tender, about 30-35 minutes.  Remove from oven and allow to cool for 10-15 minutes.
  3. Remove the skin carefully, while holding the stem, using a knife or peeler.  Mash the pulp of the eggplant thoroughly with fork or place in a food processor.  Slowly beat in lemon juice alternately with tahini.
  4. Crush garlic with salt and mix to a paste.  Blend into the eggplant mixture (you want the mixture to be a chunky texture).  Adjust salt and lemon to taste.
  5. Pour into shallow serving dishes or platters and garnish with chopped parsley.  Serve with pita bread or pita chips.

I hope you enjoy Baba Ghanoush as much as we do! It’s a Lebanese favorite.
Adapted from Lebanese Cooking Cookbook

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