Who doesn’t love hummus, the famous dip that’s made its way from Middle Eastern eateries onto our supermarket shelves. In today’s recipe we’ll meet its semi-identical twin: baba ganoush.
Hummus and baba ghanoush are so similar yet so different. That’s because they are prepared with exactly the same ingredients, the only exception being that the main ingredient in hummus is chickpeas, whereas in baba ganoush it’s aubergines (eggplants). I adore baba ghanoush: it’s zesty, light and highly nutrious. Follow this easy recipe and next time you have friends over for a bite, you’ll be able to treat them to this yummy dip.
Preparation: 5 minutes
Roasting the aubergines: ca. 30 minutes
3 – 6 (see recipe)
Ingredients You’ll Need
2 medium-sized aubergines (eggplants) or 3 small ones
3 tablespoons of tahini (sesame paste)
Juice of half a large lemon (or of an entire lemon, if small)
3 tablespoons olive oil
Crushed sea salt and black pepper
Optional: 1 clove of fresh garlic – I prefer it without and didn’t include garlic in this recipe
Optional: Some chopped parsley or sweet paprika to sprinkle over
To serve with: Lebanese flat bread or Pita bread, salad, raw vegetables (like carrots and sweet peppers), meat or fish
How Many Portions You’ll Get
If you’re having this as your main meal, you’ll get 3 very generous portions as in the image . If you’re making it as a dip, I’d say 6 people could easily share.
How to Make it
Preheat your oven on the grill setting, highest temperature, at least 10 minutes in advance. Wash the aubergines, take a fork and pierce* each aubergine about 5 – 6 times making sure you cover all sides.
*This will prevent them from exploding in your oven – not kidding!
Put the aubergines on an oven rack* high up in the oven. The aubergines should be just underneath the heat pipe but shouldn’t touch it.
*If you don’t have an oven rack, use an oven tray covering it with baking paper or aluminum foil.
As they bake, the aubergines will lose a lot of liquid. If you use an oven rack, make sure to put an oven tray covered with baking foil at the bottom of the oven. This way, the liquid will drip into the tray and you’ll avoid a mess and unnecessary cleaning afterwards.
Cook the aubergines under the grill (maximum heat) for about 25 – 30 minutes, turning them every now and then to make sure they cook on all sides.
This is what the aubergines will look like when they’re cooked. Before peeling them, prod them with your finger, they should feel soft. If they’re still hard, put them back under the grill. If they feel empty and the skin is too dry, they’ve probably been in the oven a bit too long.
Remove the skin and put the aubergine flesh in a bowl. If the aubergines have seeds, you don’t want these in your baba ganoush – they can taste bitter and aren’t really nice in a dip. You should be able to peel or cut away the entire seed layer quite easily.
If you have a choice, opt for smaller aubergines as bigger aubergines, like the ones I used, tend to have seeds. As you can see, I ended up with yummy aubergine flesh on the right, yucky seeds on the left.
Put all the ingredients* (aubergine flesh, tahini, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper) into a deep bowl or jar.
*But not the parsley or paprika as these are garnish to make your dish look pretty.
If you have a handheld blender, use this to mix your ingredients into a smooth paste. Otherwise, use a fork to mash everything as much as you can (you’ll end up with a dip that has slightly more texture, but that’s absolutely fine).
Scoop the paste into a bowl, salad plate, small serving plate, or whichever plate you prefer. Drizzle some more olive oil on top, as well as sweet paprika and / or chopped parsley if you like.
Serve with salad, raw vegetables, Lebanese or Pita bread or a piece of meat / fish.
Have you tried this recipe? Let me know in the comments below how it worked out for you or post your images to Instagram #StudentReceipe