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baba ganoush

(post, Donia Clark)

For some reason, I always thought baba ganoush would be hard to make. I've been craving it a lot lately and while there is an excellent Middle Eastern restaurant near me that makes great baba, my budget doesn't allow for me to go there as often as I would like. Last night, I decided it was time for me to take the recipe into my own hands. I looked at a bunch of recipes online and in cookbooks, found out what the common ingredients were and tweaked it to my taste.

I poked a bunch of holes in an eggplant to keep it from exploding, then tossed it in the oven to roast for about half an hour. When it was done, I wrapped it in several layers of plastic wrap and let it sit for about another half hour. I then cut the tip off with some kitchen shears and squeezed the eggplant out of the plastic wrap like it was toothpaste. That awesome trick came to me from Alton Brown. Usually, that dude annoys me with his dork schtick, but that is one tip worth keeping. I find him much more palatable to read than watch.

Anyway, that little time and labor-saver was one-half of what made this so easy. The second came from my blender. After I drained the eggplant for about 10 minutes, I combined a couple teaspoons of garlic, a little over a quarter cup of lemon juice (say 5 ounces, for those who like measurements), the eggplant pulp, a few tablespoons of tahini, about a half teaspoon of salt, a teaspoon of pepper and about a half teaspoon of honey, pulsed it a few times and baba ganoush! I toasted some pita bread, slathered the baba on and called it dinner. Very addictive! I can see this becoming a staple, especially since it takes almost no effort at all.