Oh, my goodness, there are so many spelling options for what is basically a pretty simple dish. Is it baba ganoush or ghanoush? Or possibly ghanouj? However you spell it, it's very tasty. Traditionally it refers to a recipe of roasted eggplant blended together with tahini and various spices and it's a typical appetizer or mezze plate in Middle Eastern cuisine. It's quite easy to make but I've also seen pre-made tubs of it in large markets that sell hummus and tahini.
Both my parents fell in love with it when they spent time in the Middle East and they both had a fondness for eggplant in general. And then they had a child. (That would be me. Hi.) A child who refused to eat eggplant. I have no idea why my child's brain decided that this tasty vegetable was not fit for consumption but I was firm in my belief and no amount of my mother's attempts to disguise it would do. I did, however, really like zucchini. So, my mother compromised, as good mothers often do, and made her baba ganoush with roasted zucchini instead. She didn't invent the alternative recipe, mind you. Lots of people make zucchini baba ganoush and it it was something the whole family would eat. We won't discuss how my poor German father lost his beloved veal wiener schnitzel to a chicken version due to his picky daughter.
Regardless of whether you like the original eggplant recipe, the alternative zucchini recipe or both, the consistency of both vegetables is very similar and the resulting dip is creamy and smooth. You can use more or less tahini depending on your preference and feel free to customize the spices a bit to suit your taste. Then grab some homemade pita chips and start happy snacking!
- 2 Large zucchini, split in half lengthwise
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 Clove garlic, peeled
- 2 - 3 Tablespoons tahini (sesame paste)
- 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 Tablespoons chopped parsley
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- 2 Tablespoons pine nuts, toasted, for garnish
- Pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
- Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Slice each zucchini in half, lengthwise, and drizzle on the olive oil. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and roast in the oven for 30 minutes or until the zucchinis are fully soft.
- Allow to cool enough to handle and scoop the flesh out of each zucchini half. Add it to a food processor along with the garlic clove, tahini and lemon juice. Puree until smooth and stir in the chopped parsley, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes if using. Serve with the toasted pine nuts along side pita bread for dipping.
|Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)|
|Total Fat||13 g|
|Saturated Fat||2 g|
|Unsaturated Fat||6 g|
|Dietary Fiber||3 g|