Best Smoked Aubergine Dip – Baba Ganoush

Best Smoked Aubergine Dip

Eggplants or Aubergines? Does it really matter when all that counts is that smokey, rich and creamy flesh turned into a beautiful, mouth-watering dip? This is definitely a favourite in our home.  For me, it’s just as delicious and it ranks high up there with its ubiquitous partner hummus; although I must say there is never any baba ganoush left at the end of the meal.  Ah, levantine, what would I do without you?

Before coming to Abidjan, I had always had an electric stove and was ‘forced’ to oven-roast my eggplants rather than charring them over a gas burner.  Well, my friends let me tell you, the mess on the hob is well worth every mouthful.

But, don’t freak out. Oven-roasted or broiled aubergines still make a delicious and flavoursome baba ganoush. Without any further ado, here is the recipe.

Cooking the Aubergines:

If you are going to oven-roast them, then I suggest you cook the aubergines in a 180ºC/375ºF oven for about 30 minutes. Let them cool and then peel them.  You could also take advantage of a BBQ or braai, as we say in South Africa, to cook them.

If you are going to char them over a gas burner, place a sheet of foil paper under the burner, so as to make the cleaning easier. You will have some ash on the hob but not that much.

Baba Ganoush

Best Smoked Aubergine Dip

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients:

  • 4-5 medium aubergines, we have the small, long variety here
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 small garlic clove – I don’t like it when garlic overpowers other flavours but feel free to add more if want a stronger garlicky flavour.
  • 1 big Tbsp of sesame paste, Tahini
  • a pinch of salt
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Optional: pomegranate seeds to add crunch and a pinch of sumac (a tangy, lemony spice often used in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cooking)

Directions:

  1. Lay the aubergines over the flames of  a small gas hob. Let them slowly cook, rotating them frequently with a fork or tongs; making sure that all sides are perfectly charred. You’ll know the aubergine is done when it’s deflated. Some people say that they can release liquid but I didn’t find that with this method.
  2. Once the aubergines are charred, let them cool before peeling them.
  3. Put that yummy, soft, smokey flesh in a blender with the garlic, tahini and lemon juice. Add a pinch of salt and blend away for a few seconds.
  4. Transfer everything to a serving bowl, add a drizzle of olive oil, a pinch of sumac if you have any and decorate with pomegranate seeds. Voilà!
  5. Serve with pita bread and be ready to make some more!

Bon appétit!

 

3 thoughts on “Best Smoked Aubergine Dip – Baba Ganoush

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