baba ganoush + za’atar pita recipe
This recipe can be doubled or tripled for larger groups or families. The proportions below make 2 to 3 cups of finished baba ganoush. Adopted from virgie and hats.
1 eggplant, about 1 lb., cleaned and pierced several times with a fork
1/3 cup tahini paste
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon coarse salt (sea salt or kosher salt)
1/4 teaspoon aleppo pepper or crushed red pepper
1/2 teaspoon za’atar
1. Preheat the oven to 375 F. Place the whole eggplant on a gas burner at medium-high, or on an outdoor grill. When one side chars completely, use metal tongs to turn it, gradually, until it is charred on all sides. This will take 10 – 20 minutes, depending on how charred and smoky you like your finished baba.
2. When completely charred to your liking, place the eggplant on a baking sheet in the oven. Bake until it pierces easily all the way through with a sharp knife, another 20 to 30 minutes. You want to err on the side of overcooking. Remove cooked eggplant from oven and cook completely.
3. Meanwhile, combine the rest of the ingredients in the food processor or blender. Scrape and scoop all the cooled eggplant flesh from the skin into the bowl of the food processor. (You don’t want the skin in the finished product.)
4. Process or blend until smooth and completely mixed. Scrape into a bowl and serve with pita (below). This dish is better the day after it’s made, so you can also scrape into an airtight container and refrigerate for later use.
olive oil for brushing
coarse salt (sea salt or kosher salt)
1. Preheat oven to 375 F. Cut as many pitas as you like into quarters. Place on baking sheet. Brush olive oil onto the tops of wedges and sprinkle with za’atar and coarse salt to taste. I like to evenly cover the tops of the pitas with za’atar.
2. Place baking sheet with pitas in the oven. For soft, pliable bread, bake for 3 to 4 minutes. For crisper chips, bake for longer, 5 to 10 minutes. Serve.