Summer means eggplants…and lots of them! I know we’re still a little early (official eggplant season starts in July), but I’ve spotted a few of these purple beauties at my weekly farmer’s market and just couldn’t resist making my favorite spread with them — baba ghanoush.
Baba ghanoush is a traditional roasted eggplant spread, with a texture similar to hummus. Also like hummus, it contains tahini (sesame seed paste), garlic and lemon juice. I can’t get enough.
It’s so easy to make your own baba ghanoush at home! Eggplant is a vegetable with a very high water content so it’s important to generously sprinkle your eggplant with salt and let it drain for an hour prior to use. I know it might seem like an unnecessary added step, but skipping this will lead to mushy eggplant and watery baba ghanoush…and no one wants that!
I love using my baba ghanoush as a sandwich stuffer like hummus, but it’s also great as part of an appetizer plate alongside some olives, fruit and crackers. Perfect for those Memorial Day picnics!
I hope you guys enjoy this easy recipe for my favorite summertime spread. Happy eggplant roasting!
Baba Ghanoush with Sea Salt
- 1 large eggplant (about 1 lb)
- 2 tablespoons tahini (sesame seed paste)
- 2 lemons, juiced
- ½ tsp paprika
- 1 tsp garlic
- sea salt
- Slice the eggplant into 1” cubes. Lay eggplant on a paper towel-lined tray and generously sprinkle with salt. Place more paper towels on top and let sit for 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Squeeze out any extra liquid from eggplant with paper towels, then scatter eggplant cubes onto a greased cookie sheet, sprinkle with a little more salt (really!), and roast for 25 minutes.
- Remove roasted eggplant from the oven and transfer to a food processor or high-speed blender. Add tahini, lemon juice, paprika and garlic. Process until smooth but still slightly chunky. Add additional salt to taste.
- Serve babaganoush with pita bread, crackers or as a sandwich spread. Babaganoush will keep in the fridge for up to six days.
Tips/TechniquesYou can peel the eggplant prior to slicing and roasting if you prefer, but I like the bit of color that the pretty purple skin adds along with texture. It’s up to you!
Yield: Makes about ¾ cup
- Fresh Tastes Blog: Smoky Baba Ghanoush recipe
Jenna Weber is half of the Fresh Tastes blog team. She graduated from Le Cordon Bleu in 2008 and, since then, has worked as a pastry chef, bread baker and freelance food editor. Currently, Jenna blogs full-time on EatLiveRun.com where her delicious daily recipes and quirky culinary musings appeal to thousands. She lives in Northern California and, when not in the kitchen, can usually be found on her yoga mat.