Elizabeth Arnott

Babaganoush (eggplant/aubergine purée)

I always think that the name “Babaganoush” sounds so exotic – and the delicious aubergine (eggplant) pureé with its rich and subtle Mediterranean flavour is memorable.  Aubergines (eggplants) are highly nutritious, rich in fibre, and have many vitamin and minerals, and phytonutrients (natural antioxidants)

This recipe is really easy, and you can be preparing something else while waiting for the aubergines to roast.  I use my little countertop toaster oven, which saves electricity, and also means that the kitchen doesn't get too hot.
Time:  60 minutes
Serves 4
Ingredients:
4 large aubergines (eggplant) (whole – do not peel or chop the stem)
2 cloves garlic (peeled)
6 tbspn fresh lemon juice
4 tbspn tahini (sesame paste)
pinch of sea salt
Garnish:
fresh parsley
Preheat the oven to 325℉, 170℃, Gas mark 3

Method:
1. Pierce the skin of the aubergines (eggplants) with a fork so they don’t explode, place them whole onto a baking tray and roast for about 45 minutes, turning them over a couple of times.  You will know when they are done when they have collapsed, the outer shell is charred and the inside is soft

2. When cool enough to handle, cut them open lengthwise, and scoop out the soft pulp. Put into a mixing bowl and mash to a purée with a fork

3. Crush the garlic with a pinch of salt in a pestle and mortar until you have a smooth paste

4. In another bowl, mix together the tahini and lemon juice, and add the garlic paste

5. Add the tahini mixture to the puréed aubergine (eggplant) and beat it gently but thoroughly until the babaganoush is smooth. Season to taste

6. Spoon onto a serving dish and garnish with chopped parsley

7. Serve at room temperature 

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