How to make the perfect Baba Ganoush



Preparation time: 25 minutes
Serves six people


Often, the best bit about picnics or those lazy Sunday afternoon lunches are the small things, those extra little delights that bring a punchy new flavour to the table, or provide a bit of contrast to whatever else you’re eating.

Dips and salads are great examples of this - who doesn’t love dunking their bread or chips into a homemade, creamy dip? They’re miles better than those mass-produced, chemical-flavoured examples you get from the shop, and more often than not, they’re incredibly easy to make.

This Baba Ganoush is the perfect accompaniment to any lunch - it has a beautiful, smokey taste, and a moreish texture that will be an instant hit with your friends. Try it today!


What you'll need:

  • Three ripe aubergines
  • Three crushed garlic cloves, mixed with a pinch of salt
  • The juice of one lemon
  • Three tablespoons of olive oil
  • Two tablespoons of tahini
  • One tablespoon of chopped parsley
  • Black pepper to taste

Method:

First

First of all, prick your aubergines all over with a fork. Then put them under a hot grill, or stick directly onto your gas hob. You want them to char all over, until they are very soft to touch and oozing slightly. You’ll want to turn them regularly for about twenty minutes to get the optimum effect and that lovely, smokey flavour.

Second

Crush together the garlic with the olive oil, lemon juice, pepper and tahini. You can do this easily in a pestle and mortar, but if you don’t have one, a small bowl and the back of a spoon works fine for me.

Third

When they’re cool enough to handle, cut your aubergines in half and scoop out all the creamy, soft, cooked flesh from the middle. Put the aubergine flesh in a bowl, and mix with your other crushed ingredients - try not to get any skin in the mix, as it will taste very bitter.

Fourth

Serve with a drizzle of olive oil on top, and a scattering of chopped parsley with some crusty bread or whatever else you fancy. It’s delicious!


Wine pairing for Baba Ganoush

Aubergines are a great ingredient to match with wine. They have a beautiful subtlety to them that means they generally require a lighter-bodied wine, but their smokiness in this dish and the punch from the garlic and sesame means you can afford to be a little bold when pairing with Baba Ganoush.

For me, the best wines to serve with this would be one of the classic picnic reds - a medium red from Italy, full of sunny hedgerow flavours such as a Primitivo, although a soft Zinfandel (less than 15% alcohol) would be a great substitute if you want something more accessible.


There you have it -- a picnic-perfect recipe for Baba Ganoush!

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