Baba Ghanouj - Charred Eggplant Salad recipe

© 2022 Alanna Hale

AuthorReem Assil
This is a bright, creamy, pomegranate-eggplant salad, but hold the tahini, please. It’s a mystery why baba ghanouj, one of our most widely known dishes, is so different in the United States from that in the Arab world. When we talk about baba ghanouj in the Levant, we are referring to a tart salad of creamy roasted eggplant, brightened with pomegranate molasses and flecked with tomatoes—which is what this is! Eat this baba ghanouj with bread, or it’s also delicious as a side salad.
 
Reprinted with permission from Arabiyya: Recipes from the Life of an Arab in Diaspora by Reem Assil, copyright © 2022. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House.

How to Make It

1

Cook the eggplants directly on the burner of a gas stove or in the oven. On a gas stove, sear the eggplants directly over a medium-high flame. Rotate every 5 minutes until the globes are completely blackened, about 15 minutes total. Alternately, preheat the oven to 450°F. Place the eggplants on a sheet tray, poke them all over with the tines of a fork, rub them with the oil, and place the tray in the oven and cook for 25 to 30 minutes, until the eggplants collapse in on themselves, and the skins are blackened.

2

Place the cooked eggplants in a bowl and seal the bowl with plastic wrap to let the eggplants steam in their own juices.

3

In a medium bowl, combine the garlic, lemon juice and zest, cumin, salt, and black pepper.

4

When the eggplants have cooled enough to touch, split them lengthwise. Using a spoon, scrape out the pulp, discarding the skins and stems. For a milder flavor, scrape the seeds off the strands of pulp.

5

Use a fork to mash the pulp into the lemon-garlic mix. Fold in the tomato, bell pepper, and onion. Adjust the salt to taste.

6

When ready to serve, scoop the eggplant mixture onto a serving plate, drizzle it with the olive oil, and garnish it with the parsley and molasses. Baba ghanouj can be stored, ungarnished, in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Ingredients

 2 large globe eggplants (about 2 lbs.)
 2 garlic cloves, minced
 ¼ cup lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
 Zest of 2 lemons
 ½ tsp ground cumin
 1 tsp kosher salt, plus more as needed
  tsp freshly ground black pepper
 1 small Roma tomato, finely diced
 ½ red bell pepper, finely diced
 ½ red onion, finely diced
 1 tbsp coarsely chopped parsley
 1 tsp pomegranate molasses

Directions

1

Cook the eggplants directly on the burner of a gas stove or in the oven. On a gas stove, sear the eggplants directly over a medium-high flame. Rotate every 5 minutes until the globes are completely blackened, about 15 minutes total. Alternately, preheat the oven to 450°F. Place the eggplants on a sheet tray, poke them all over with the tines of a fork, rub them with the oil, and place the tray in the oven and cook for 25 to 30 minutes, until the eggplants collapse in on themselves, and the skins are blackened.

2

Place the cooked eggplants in a bowl and seal the bowl with plastic wrap to let the eggplants steam in their own juices.

3

In a medium bowl, combine the garlic, lemon juice and zest, cumin, salt, and black pepper.

4

When the eggplants have cooled enough to touch, split them lengthwise. Using a spoon, scrape out the pulp, discarding the skins and stems. For a milder flavor, scrape the seeds off the strands of pulp.

5

Use a fork to mash the pulp into the lemon-garlic mix. Fold in the tomato, bell pepper, and onion. Adjust the salt to taste.

6

When ready to serve, scoop the eggplant mixture onto a serving plate, drizzle it with the olive oil, and garnish it with the parsley and molasses. Baba ghanouj can be stored, ungarnished, in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Baba Ghanouj (Charred Eggplant Salad)

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