2 large eggplant (aubergine)
2/3 cup tahini (sesame paste)
1/2 cup lemon juice
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
Small amount of finely diced tomato, for garnish
Pinch of paprika, for garnish
Drizzle of olive oil, to serve
The tangy creaminess of the tahini compliments the silky texture of the eggplant in this popular Lebanese dip. Choose firm, shiny eggplant.
Pairs well with …..
Olives, pickles and barbecued fish
Hints and tips:
For an alternative, omit the tahini, lemon juice and garlic, finely dice an onion and combine with the warm mashed eggplant along with salt and a generous dash of olive oil. Serve warm with fresh Lebanese/pita bread.
The eggplant can be cooked on a barbecue (with a lid), in the oven or directly over a flame, with coals, for a smoky flavour.
For the barbecue, preheat to medium high heat, place eggplant on the char grill (if you have) and close the lid. Cook, turning regularly, until very soft (collapsing) and charred. This may take 20 minutes to half an hour, depending on the size of your eggplant.
For the oven, place eggplant (pricked with a fork) on a baking tray into a preheated oven at 220c (430f). Bake for 40 minutes, until very soft and blackened.
Remove and place in the sink in a colander. Once cooled slightly, hold the top of the eggplant and peel off the skin. The skin will peel of fairly easily if the eggplant is cooked. Let the excess juice drain.
Place the flesh in a blender with the tahini, garlic, salt and lemon juice, process until smooth.
Serve garnished with parsley, tomato and paprika and drizzled with olive oil.