The culinary world is as diverse and unique as the nations where the dishes originate from. It carries the traditions and flavors from various places and puts it conveniently on a plate. Delicacies from the Middle East, such as tahini, tabouli, and hummus, are some of the most interesting ones. Today, we’ll talk about yet another Levantine dish – baba ghanoush, an appetizing appetizer.
What is Baba Ghanoush?
Baba ghanoush, also known as baba ghanouj or baba ganoush, is taking both fine dining and home settings by storm. It is widely recognized as a dish mainly made of mashed, cooked eggplant combined with several seasonings, tahini, and olive oil.
Baba ghanoush is a delicacy that has a distinct smoky taste. The ideal serving of this dish is as a cold or room temperature spread and it goes incredibly well with pita bread. Although, some enjoy it on it’s own, and that’s absolutely fine!
How to Prepare Baba Ghanoush at Home
You don’t have to go to a restaurant or visit the grocery in order to enjoy a piece of heaven that is baba ghanoush. You just need a few ingredients and you can easily whip up this Levantine dish at home! This includes the following:
– One large eggplant
– Garlic cloves
– Pinch ground cumin
– Olive oil
– Brine-cured black olives
– Fresh lemon juice
– Flat-leaf parsley
– Salt to taste
As far as cooking necessities, begin preparing a charcoal grill and an oven. The first step is to grill the eggplant until the outer skin turns black and you see a soft flesh, which is usually done within 10 to 15 minutes. After which, bake it in the oven for around 15-20 minutes until very soft.
Once that’s done, allow the eggplant to cool a bit and then peel the skin. Mash the eggplant in a bowl and then mix the other ingredients together, with variations in salt, lemon juice, and tahini according to your taste. Drizzle olive oil, sprinkle some parsley, put some olives on the sides for presentation, and voila! Enjoy!
The Battle Between Baba Ghanoush and Hummus
As far as nutritional value is concerned, baba ghanoush and hummus are often compared with each other. So which one is better? It really depends on what you need.
When talking about similarities, both hummus and baba ghanoush have no cholesterol content. As a matter of fact, they both contain unsaturated fats, which are instrumental to cardiovascular health through low cholesterol levels and decreased inflammation.
When talking about differences, baba ghanoush has more potassium content, which is essential to regular heartbeat and optimal nerve and muscle function. On the other hand, hummus has more B-vitamin content for energy and lesser risks of cardiovascular problems. Either way, both are good for you.
So, ready to whip up a healthy dish of baba ghanoush? You know you want to try it!