When I was growing up in Lebanon, there were ALWAYS 2 things you could count on at the dinner table (other than crazy relatives yelling at each other) - hummus and baba ghanouzh. In the old days, Tayta (Grandma in Arabic) would shanghai someone into standing at the stovetop turning eggplants over to char/roast them which inevitably caused even more yelling when things didn't go right. Here's a much easier way to make it —TXDjinn
- Makes Depends on size/quantity of eggplants used
Good sized Italian Eggplant
Clove of garlic for each eggplant used
Tahini for each eggplant used
Your best olive oil
Salt per Clove of Garlic used
- Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees and line a good sized pan that will hold your eggplants with aluminum foil
- Wash off your eggplant (it's called Batenzhan in Arabic) and remove the stem end and slice in half legnthwise.
- Place your eggplant(s), cut side down in the baking pan and place them into the oven for 1 hour.
- Take the pan out of the oven and let the eggplants cool - they skin should have started turning brown and the eggplant halves should have shrunk some. You might want to drain off the juices that have come out.
- While the eggplants cool, mash up the clove(s) of garlic and salt in a mortar and pestle until it's a smooth, silky paste. BTW, this is also excellent to put on grilled chicken.
- In a container, scoop out the contents of the eggplant and stir them to break them up a bit - this shouldn't be smooth. Add in your garlic paste, tahini and stir.
- Add in your olive oil to give it a nice gloss - this is really eyeballed but I generally go with half a tablespoon.
- Taste and add salt or oil as needed. This really needs at least a day in the fridge to allow the flavours to come together.
- When you serve, drizzle a little more oil on it and sprinkle some sumac (you can find this as any Arabic market) for colour and some additional flavour. Believe it or not, I usually serve this with tortilla chips which really complement it - there's no rule that says you have to serve it with pita!