A good baba ghanoush is velvety with the smoky, earthy flavours of eggplant, nuttiness of tahini and sparkle of lemon. We know it as a dip but in many countries, but it’s also served as a salad dish. It’s naturally gluten-free and dairy-free, perfect for a paleo and Whole30 diet.
Baba ghanoush is originally from the Levant area (Israel, Lebanon, Jordan, Syria). It’s made with chargrilled eggplant (aubergine), lashings of olive oil, lemon juice and (usually) with tahini and various seasonings. You can use the oven to roast or a BBQ to chargrill the eggplant.
This is my simple recipe for a small batch for baba ghanoush. Some recipes call for an addition of yoghurt or cream, but I think it’s gorgeous and perfectly light without dairy.
For roasting the eggplant
- 1 large eggplant cut in half, lengthways
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon Tahini paste light coloured
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- 1 garlic clove grated or crushed
- 2/3 teaspoon sea salt
- Pinch of cracked pepper
- Heat the oven to 200 C / 400 F and bake eggplant, drizzled with olive oil, for 45 minutes or until crispy and dark golden brown. It should be soft on the inside.
- Cool the eggplant for about 1 hour and remove the outer skin only. Cut the flesh roughly and place in a food processor or a blender with tahini, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and pepper. Purée until smooth. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil, parsley and some scattered pomegranate to make it extra pretty.