MAKES about 2 cups (VEG): Roasting the eggplants until they’re completely soft is essential for baba ghanoush with a rich, smooth texture.
WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS Baba ghanoush is a meze staple across Lebanon, Palestine, and beyond. It’s typically made by concentrating the rich flavors of eggplant over an open flame before scraping and mashing the pulp into a dip seasoned with any number of regional spices and oils. Hoping to bring this recipe indoors, we decided to prepare it in the oven. We pricked the eggplants’ skin to encourage moisture to evaporate during cooking, then roasted them whole in a very hot oven until the flesh was very soft and tender. To avoid a watery texture in the finished dish, we scooped the hot pulp into a colander to drain before processing it. We kept the flavorings simple, processing the eggplant with lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, and tahini. Look for eggplants with shiny, taut, and unbruised skins and an even shape (eggplants with a bulbous shape won’t cook evenly). We prefer to serve baba ghanoush only lightly chilled; if cold, let it stand at room temperature for about 20 minutes before serving. Serve with Olive Oil–Sea Salt Pita Chips, fresh warm pita, or raw vegetables.
- 2 eggplants (1 pound each), pricked all over with fork
- 2 tablespoons tahini
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for serving
- 4 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1 small garlic clove, minced
- Salt and pepper
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley
- Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 500 degrees. Place eggplants on aluminum foil–lined rimmed baking sheet and roast, turning eggplants every 15 minutes, until uniformly soft when pressed with tongs, 40 to 60 minutes. Let eggplants cool for 5 minutes on baking sheet.
- Set colander over bowl. Trim top and bottom off each eggplant and slit
eggplants lengthwise. Using spoon, scoop hot pulp into colander (you should have about 2 cups pulp); discard skins. Let pulp drain for 3 minutes.
- Transfer drained eggplant to food processor. Add tahini, oil, lemon juice, garlic, ¾ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Pulse mixture to coarse puree, about 8 pulses. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Transfer to serving bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour. (Dip can be refrigerated for up to 24 hours; bring to room temperature before serving.) Season with salt and pepper to taste, drizzle with extra oil to taste, and sprinkle with parsley before serving.
Making Baba Ghanoush
1-ROAST EGGPLANTS Roast whole, unpeeled eggplants until skins darken and wrinkle and eggplants are uniformly soft when pressed with tongs.
2- REMOVE AND DRAIN PULP Trim top and bottom off each eggplant and slit eggplants lengthwise. Use spoon to scoop hot pulp from skins into colander; let drain for 3 minutes.
3- PULSE DIP Pulse drained eggplant, tahini, oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and pepper together in food processor until mixture has coarse texture, about 8 pulses.
4- CHILL Transfer to serving bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until chilled, 45 minutes to 1 hour.