Baba Ganoush – The New Comfort Food
Chips and dips are a favorite comfort food. Finding a plant base alternative can leave you feeling a little stuck. Hummus is great but can get mundane. So if you are looking for a plant based dip that is a real crowd pleaser let me introduce you to Baba Ganoush! Baba Ganoush is a roasted eggplant dip that is traditionally served with grilled pita bread. In Middle Eastern cultures this roasted eggplant dish is a comfort food. Trust me it is likely to have the same effect on you. Its rich deep smoky flavors are something I crave. I like to serve mine chilled with halved bite size cherry tomatoes, cucumber, celery sticks, carrots sticks, and pita crisp. If I am having it for lunch I love to pile it high on a gluten free toasted pita, topped with baby spinach, diced cucumber and a touch of olive oil and lemon. It makes an amazing snack too. Use a wholesome cracker like Jilz Crackers and dip away. Its good for you and will leave you feeling satisfied.
Eggplant – Ewwww?
I bet half of you that are reading this recipe are thinking “ewwww I hate eggplant!” The likely cause of that aversion is the bitter taste that eggplant can produce. The fact is that bitter taste is one of the reasons eggplant is remarkable for the human body. It taste bitter as a form of protection to keep animals and pest from eating it. Eggplant is packed with antioxidants that fight free radicals in the human body and protect the plant in nature. I love this article in MNT (Medical News Today) and what it has to say about eggplant.
Even if you think you don’t like eggplant you might give the recipe below a try. It is not over powered by eggplant flavor and I have a tip in the recipe that will help eliminate the “ewww” bitter factor. Enjoy!
1 large organic eggplant
1 cup organic tahini
1 tsp roasted or raw garlic
3 tbs olive oil
¼ cup fresh parsley (flat or curly)
juice of 1 lemon
salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 350. Wash eggplant, use fork to pierce the skin on all sides of the eggplant. Place on baking sheet and roast for 20-30 minutes. Remove and let cool.
- To easily remove the eggplant skin place in a large bowl of ice water. Skin should wrinkle and become paper thin. Cut stem from top of eggplant and discard. Beginning at the top where stem was removed pull gently on the skin. Remove as much skin as possible in this process but it does not have to be totally removed. Over bowl of ice water give the eggplant a tight squeeze. Removing some of this liquid will help remove some of the bitter flavor from the eggplant. Discard ice water. NOTE: you can remove the seeds to further rid the dip of a bitter flavor.
- Place all ingredients except 1 tbs of olive oil and paprika in blender or food processor. Blend until slightly smooth.
- Chill in refrigerator for up to one hour before serving. When ready to serve drizzle last tbs of olive oil and paprika on top. Serve with fresh raw veggies or toasted pita.