To microwave or not to microwave
Continuing with the microwave expedition, I made a beautiful baba ghanoush – which is an aubergine dip. Now before you judge me into oblivion, it took me 10 minutes from start to finish and the result was as good as the conventional way of preparing the dip. I must admit, though, that it only lacked a little of that smoky flavour that you’d achieve by char grilling the aubergine before making the dip.
Baba ghanoush is a popular Levantine dish, prepared by roasting egg plant over an open flame until the flesh is soft and cooked. The flesh is then scraped out of the charred skin and has a lovely, deep smoky flavour. To cook the egg plant in this way, usually takes a bit of time, but the flavour is really worth the time. However, if you are pressed for time, I found that the microwave method had a pretty good result. After the soft flesh is scooped from the skin, olive oil, garlic, lemon juice and tahini is added, then blended until smooth. Tahini is a pasted made from ground sesame seeds. It is used as a dip in North African, Greece, Middle Eastern and Turkish foods. It is also a major flavour addition to hummus, baba ghanoush and halva. Nowadays, it is not only restricted to these countries or these uses, but chefs all over the world incorporates itin all types of recipes. Tahini has a lovely,rich and nutty flavour and only a little isnecessary to flavour dishes.
Baba ghanoush can be served as a starter with flatbreads like pita or with vegetable crudits. I like toserveit with burgers and grilled meat. It is also really good on a sandwich with good quality cold or smoked meats and fresh salad. If youaren’t up to preparing it by char grilling the egg plant, try the microwave recipe – it’s really quick, easy and you will love the flavour!