Dips are great not just for entertaining but also for snacks anytime of the year. I’m a grazer so dips are perfect. However, we all know that store-bought versions can hide many unwanted calories. Okay, so can homemade but that’s easy to tweak. Baba Ganoush is a delicious eggplant based dip that originated from Lebanon and is enjoyed by many other countries in the Middle East.
There are several variations of eggplants out on the market. I was surprised to learn that technically, it’s considered a fruit and not a vegetable. While I go for the deep purple larger ones for this recipe, I’ve also used the thinner ones if I have them on hand. Eggplants are full of nutrients. No surprise. Also high in antioxidants and a great source of fibre. You can read more about the health benefits here.
Here’s an easy Baba Ganoush that’s my “go-to” recipe that I’ve been tweaking for months. Honestly surprised that my family is still keen on eating it since I make it so often. Thought I’d share it now just in case you need a quick appetizer this weekend that doesn’t get in the way of your Turkey feast.
HOMEMADE BABA GANOUSH (makes approximately 2 cups)
- 2 large eggplants
- 1 tbsp roasted garlic, finely minced
- 2 tbsp Tahini
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1/2 tsp hot sauce (Tabasco -any flavour works)
- juice from half a lemon
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 400F and place the rack in the middle of the oven.
- Cut eggplants in half lengthwise and brush all sides with olive oil. Place flesh side down on a baking sheet (you can line the bottom with parchment paper first). Prick the skin several times with a fork.
- Bake in the oven for 40 minutes. When done, remove from oven and allow to cool for 15 minutes while resting on the baking sheet.
- In a large bowl, use a spoon to scrape out the roasted flesh. Discard the skin.
- Mash up the cooked eggplant in the bowl with a fork. Then add all the other ingredients and combine well.
- Serve immediately or cool completely and store in a container in the fridge for up to two days.
Serve with your favourite crackers, pita bread, pita chips or cut up veggies.
You can also grill the eggplants for a nice charred and roasted flavour.
Garnish with fresh pomegranate seeds for a pretty presentation.
Don’t be afraid to adjust the garlic, smoked paprika, hot sauce to your preference. I tend to have a heavier hand with garlic for myself and would increase the amount in this recipe! Hey, it keeps the vampires away!
This dip is also great as a spread in sandwiches.