My garden has been exploding lately, thanks in part to several days of miserable rain. When I started my garden, I had no idea how HUGE eggplants can get – and quickly!
I honestly had no clue what to make with all these eggplants! After some research online, I learned (finally) what baba ghanoush actually is! With a similar texture to hummus, which is made from chickpeas, baba ghanoush is made from eggplants and tahini!
There are many ways you can prepare your eggplants, but I chose to do mine over an open fire in our backyard! With these week’s recipe challenge as fire, it was only appropriate! I felt like a Khaleesi placing my giant, silver eggs on the fire and watching them roast.
I am the Mother of Eggplants. If you don’t want to roast your eggplants on an open fire, you can always opt to place them under a broiler until the skin is nice and charred. No matter how you do it, the key to this recipe is cooking the eggplants someplace HOT.
The eggplants will be charred on the outside, but should be easy to cut open to reveal their soft inner flesh – cooked to perfection! I recommend using smaller eggplants, which will carry less seeds, than giant eggplants, where the seeds are fully formed. You’ll want to scrape out as many of the fully formed seeds as possible, since they have a bitter taste.
Let the eggplant cool for a while while you make the tahini. I had no clue tahini was so simple to make. You can also use a store bought tahini sauce, but with only two ingredients, it’s hard for me to justify buying a whole jar when I can make the right amount as I need it!
Just toast the seeds until just darkened in color, then add the seeds into a food processor with some olive oil and puree until smooth. I used about three tablespoons of sesame seeds to four tablespoons of olive oil to result in a smooth tahini sauce.
Then in a large bowl, stir together the eggplant with some fresh parsley, garlic, cumin, and lemon juice.
Use a food processor to blend the baba ghanoush until creamy.
Baba ghanoush is best enjoyed room temperature, but we had no problems eating it warm or cold!
Serve the baba ghanoush alongside fresh pita bread and vegetables for dipping. Its baba delicious!
Is it spelled “ghanoush” or “ghanouj” – let me know in the comments!
Fire Roasted Baba Ghanoush
FIRE ROASTED OPTION:
- Tightly wrap each eggplant in foil and place directly into the coals of a hot, dying fire. Roast for 40-50 minutes, rotating occasionally for even cooking. The outside of the eggplants should be charred and wrinkly.
- Unwrap the eggplants from the foil and use a sharp knife to cut through the center of each eggplant. Use a spoon to scrape out as many fully formed seeds as you can.
- Use the spoon to remove the eggplant flesh from the skin, and place into a bowl. Discard the charred skins. Let cool.
- Heat a small pan over medium heat. Add the sesame seeds and toast until they've darkened in color. Place the toasted seeds into a blender or food processer along with the olive oil. Blend until a smooth tahini sauce forms.
- Stir cumin, lemon juice, salt and pepper, and fresh parley into the eggplants, then transfer to a food processor. Pour in the tahini sauce and blend until smooth.
- Let the baba ghanoush set until it reaches room temperature. Make a divot in the center and pour in extra olive oil and sprinkle on the green onion, parsley, and red pepper flakes, as desired. Serve alongside warmed pita bread and dippable vegetables. Enjoy!
- Place eggplants on a baking sheet. Preheat the oven with the broil on high, with the oven rack in the middle. Put the baking sheet in the oven and bake until the eggplants are blackened on the outside. Rotate occasionally for even cooking – about 40-60 minutes. Follow steps 2-6 outlined above to finish the baba ghanoush.