ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Food and Cooking»
  • Main Dish & Side Dish Recipes

Recipe for Babaganoush an Eggplant Dip

Updated on April 2, 2012
Babaganoush
Babaganoush

Babaganoush has a rich history with as many variations on ingredients as it does spelling. Sometimes its written as baba ganoush, baba ghanoush, baba ghannouj or even baba ghannoug. There are somethings though that don't vary: the main ingredients. Babaganoush always incorporates eggplant, garlic, lemon juice and tahini, which is a ground sesame paste.

It originated somewhere in the Middle East and just about every country in the region has their own take on the popular dish, hence all the different spellings. People in Lebanon insist its only to be eaten as an appetizer while in Egypt it often accompanies meals as a side dish. Some recipes will call for pomegranate seeds, or parsley or even chopped pistachios.

White and Purple Eggplant
White and Purple Eggplant
Eggplant most found in Europe and America
Eggplant most found in Europe and America

A Brief History of the Eggplant

Eggplant has been around since pre-history. Its widely thought that botanists in India developed the fruit. That's right, like tomatoes and potatoes, it belongs to the family of plants known as Nightshades and is technically a fruit. It has soft white flesh encapsulating lots of seeds so its actually a berry. If eggplant is prepared improperly, the seeds can be quite bitter. They have an element known as nicotinic alkaloids which also makes the fruit a relative of tobacco. Though, you'd have to consume 9 kilos or, over 20 pounds, to come close to the amount of nicotine found in one cigarette.

During the Middle Ages, Arabs introduced the fruit to the European continent. But, because of its association to the Nightshade family, it was avoided. Europeans called it mala insana, or mad apple. It was thought to cause insanity, though it was much loved for its depth of color and beautiful blossoms. In Courts around Europe it was often used to decorate table tops.

Our third president, Thomas Jefferson who was also an avid botanist, brought the fruit back to America from one of his European trips. Sadly though, the misperception that eggplant was dangerous persisted into the Americas where it was also only used as a table decoration.

The Truth About Eggplant

In spite of it's scary relatives, eggplant is extremely healthy. Its very low in saturated fat, has no cholesterol and according to studies done by the Institute of Biology of São Paulo State University, Brazil, its thought to be effective in the treatment of high blood cholesterol. Its also high in essential nutrients like manganese, phosphorus, folic acid, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Thiamin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Copper and potassium. Its an excellent source of dietary fiber and with only 10 calories per 1/2 a cup, it packs a lot of nutrition under its beautiful purple skin.

Eggplant comes in many sizes, shapes and colors in spite of the fact that you can only find one or two types at the grocery store. If you'd like to really get an idea of the diversity of this fruit, then head down to your local farmers market toward the end of summer when eggplants are abundant. It will delight your eyes.

Eggplant is an extremely versatile food. Before its cooked it has a spongy texture so eggplant will really soak up all the flavors of what ever you add to it. That means it lends itself extremely well to all sorts of dishes and is an excellent substitution for meat.

Ingredients for Babaganoush

This will make a very large portion of Babaganoush which is great to serve at parties with triangles of toasted pita bread. Since it freezes very well, I usually make a big batch, reserve what I'd like to eat that week, and freeze the rest.

  • 4 Med. Eggplants
  • 4 Cloves of Garlic
  • 1/2 Cup Tahini
  • Juice of 1 Fresh Lemon
  • 1/2 C. Good Olive Oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Salt

Directions for Babaganoush

There are two ways to prepare the eggplant for pureeing. The first is to roast them over an open flame until they're soft. It doesn't matter if the skin gets burned because even though its edible, you will be peeling it for this recipe. The grill will give the eggplant a wonderful smokey flavor.

The second method is roasting them in the oven. Preheat the oven to 180 c. or 350 F. Place the eggplants on a tinfoil covered baking sheet or in an oven proof dish and bake for about 45 minutes. The duration of cooking time will depend on the size of the eggplants. They should be nice and soft when they're finished. If they need another 10 minutes, stick them back in.

Take them out of the oven, or off the flame, and let them cool down enough to handle.

Peel and cut off the tough green stem at the top. Add them to a food processor and puree. Add the garlic then tahini. Sometimes the tahini really thickens the dip up, but don't worry, the lemon juice and olive oil will take care of that. Add the salt and taste for seasoning. Since eggplant is the star of this dish, that is what you want to be tasting the most but it should be balanced by the lemon, tahini and olive oil. As alway, adjust the flavors to suit your palate.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • edelhaus profile image
      Author

      edelhaus 6 years ago from Munich, Germany

      Thank you! Let me know how you like it.

    • profile image

      Arlene V. Poma 6 years ago

      How can you possibly lose??? An excellent Hub with a how-to, a little history, facts, and photographs. Plus, a recipe for the eggplant lover like me! Bookmarked, voted up and everything else. Can't wait to try the recipe.

    • edelhaus profile image
      Author

      edelhaus 6 years ago from Munich, Germany

      Thanks, try it out!

    • CreateSquidoo profile image

      CreateSquidoo 6 years ago

      Looks like the recipe you have posted is yummy.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is used to quickly and efficiently deliver files such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisements has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)