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Eat Your Vegetables: Eggplant

Today is all about Baba O’Riley, Baba Ganoush, and Bootcamp.

First, give this a listen. Five glorious minutes of rock & roll awesomeness in the form of “Baba O’Riley” from The Who. I mean, the opening organ alone… fantastic! Then: the outfits, Pete’s aggressive tambourine playing, and… wait for it… Roger starts singing. Dude! Plus, the gratuitous presentation of butts and arm helicoptering. It’s really just so… delicious. As is the baba ganoush recipe below, so listen and read on.

Anything with tahini, garlic, and lemon is on my “go” list, but until two days ago, I’d never made baba ganoush myself. I love when my dad makes it, but eggplant and I have a rocky relationship. Melissa Urban put out the challenge to nosh on a veg we don’t usually eat, so I revisited my ol’ purple pal.

This recipe is pretty fool-proof. I tried it with just 2 tablespoons tahini but it really needs the full 1/4 cup to sing.

hr_brown1

BabaGhanoush
Baba Ganoush

Ingredients:
2 pounds globe eggplant, about 2
1/4 cup tahini
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons lemon juice
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1/8 teaspoon chili powder
1/8 teaspoon ground cumin

Directions:
1. Preheat a gas grill or broiler on high heat with the lid closed, about 10 minutes.

2. Cut the eggplant in half lengthwise and use a sharp knife to cut a few diagonal score lines in the flesh. Place face down on the grill, close the lid, and grill for 5 minutes. Turn the eggplant face up, close the lid, and grill for an additional 10 minutes, until the skin is blackened and the eggplant is very tender (almost squishy). Set aside to cool.

3. While the eggplant cools, place the tahini, salt, lemon juice, garlic, chili powder, and cumin in the bowl of a food processor.

4. Scoop the roasted eggplant pulp out of the skin and place in a colander to drain extra moisture for 3-5 minutes. You should have about 2 cups of eggplant. Place it in the food processor and puree to your desired consistency.

5. To serve the traditional way, spread the baba ghanoush on a plate or in a shallow bowl and drizzle with olive oil, parsley, and sesame seeds. Use raw veggies and olives to scoop it into your mouth with abandon. Baba ghanoush tastes best at room temperature, but should be stored in the fridge. Its delicate flavor will hold up for 2-3 days.

YOU KNOW HOW YOU COULD DO THAT?
Oven method: Place the oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 500 F. Cover a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Poke the whole eggplant a few times with a fork and place on the baking sheet. Bake for 40-50 minutes, until the eggplant is very soft and beginning to collapse. Allow to cool, then follow the instructions above.

hr_brown1Here’s my Mediterranean feast, featuring homemade baba ganoush, alongside a grilled pork chop, sliced cucumber, and olives – with raspberries and almonds for dessert. This is dino-chow at its best. Hard to feel like I’m deprived when my plates look like this!

And now, on to Bootcamp from this morning, with Crystal, the 9th fittest woman in the world. It was a doozie of a team workout. By the end, the dirt on our arms and legs had turned to mud, and we were caked in grass clippings like slabs of chicken-fried steak. Only not at all delicious.

Bootcamp Workout
As a team, complete:

  • 300 squats
  • 300 broad jumps
  • 50 handstand pushups
  • 10 200m sprints

Our time: 12:something (I couldn’t hear over the sound of my own panting.)

2 rounds, 10-lb. ball:

  • 15 med ball cleans
  • 15 2-tap + overhead situps

3 rounds:

  • 5 burpees
  • 15 supermans

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18 Responses to “Eat Your Vegetables: Eggplant”

  1. Team CS says:

    I don't know mel…that workout actually sounds quite delicious. In addition to the recipe of course :).

    -carla

  2. Noëlle says:

    Oh my gosh… made it the pragmatic way and it is SOOO good :)!

    • Mel says:

      That’s so funny… I’ve been making it the fussy roasted way and thinking I should update the recipe because it’s SO GOOD with the smokey, roasted flavor. Glad to know the pragmatic way stands up, too.

      • Noëlle says:

        That settles it, then – next time I will have to grill the eggplant :)!

        One thing I noticed, when the baba ganoush was fresh and warm, I could really taste all of the lemony garlicky goodness and it was super creamy. I popped it in the cooler for a picnic dinner (w/ ice), and when cold the flavors were subdued and it got… chunkier? Not so creamy.

        So I guess room temperature is the way to go?

  3. [...] I made this baba ghanoush to snack on with raw veggies and we all enjoyed [...]

  4. Heidi says:

    Hi Mel, I made this today and omitted the tahini (intending to introduce eggplant to the mini-me anyways so this is a win-win for both). Yum! May just have to keep little on the side for my citrus carnitas that I made this afternoon for my breakfasts this week ;)

  5. Hey! I actually have all the ingredients to make this! How long does it keep in the fridge?

  6. Mel says:

    It will taste fresh for 3-4 days. After that, it’s still safe to eat, but it doesn’t taste as yummy.

  7. Will says:

    Any need to scoop out the seeds in the middle of the eggplant?

    • Mel says:

      I’ve made it with and without seeds and didn’t taste a significant difference, so I don’t bother with the extra step.

  8. Cobi says:

    Re: Eggplant
    I have to tell you about my botched attempt at the Well Fed Eggplant Italian Sausage Strata…I cut them too thick and then did not precook the eggplant long enough…it was good but not great.We are talking texture here, and texture is so key with eggplant. I let this dish settle into the flavors for a day before serving, so when it was not disappearing for lunches by my husband and myself I decided to get creative. I put the remaining strata in the food processor.
    1. Italian Sausage Eggplant Frittata

    But I am most proud of this delicious creation:
    2. Stuffed mini- Portobellos

    Yumm! Bake on 350 for 35 minutes or until juicy and browned.

    We had this for dinner tonight along with your Turkish Salad, but would be a great app for a party!

  9. Laura says:

    Hi Mel, I am a new dino-chower! Love all of your recipes! They always leave me feeling that I am not missing out but that I am indulging…So thanks for sharing your gift. My question is have you ever frozen the baba Ganoush? If so was it successful? We have so many in our garden and I can’t eat them fast enough. Thanks

    • Mel says:

      The prepared baba ghanoush won’t freeze well, but… try blanching and freezing the fresh eggplant: Cut the fresh eggplant into large cubes, then plunge into boiling water for about a minute. Remove from the water, run under cold water, pat dry, and freeze. When you’re ready to cook, just follow the recipes instructions as if the eggplant was raw. That should work!

  10. MH says:

    Made this last night by roasting the eggplant in the oven until the skin was darkened. My kids liked it so much they were licking the bowl to get every last drop. Thanks!

  11. […] Image Source: TheClothesMakeTheGirl […]

  12. […] Coconut butter, breakfast steak, baba ganoush from The Clothes Make the Girl, subbing the tahini for 1/4 c toasted cashew pieces and 1/2 tsp sesame oil (didn’t have any […]

  13. Abby says:

    Awwww, I really wanted to watch that video. No longer available.

    I roasted the eggplant in the oven for 40 minutes, decided it wasn’t done enough and stuck it under the broiler for 4. Lesson learned: do not use parchment paper under the broiler. I smelled fire.

    This was delicious! It brought back memories of visiting my grandparents in Brooklyn and the deli food they always ordered to feed us kids. My husband, who had never heard of baba ga-what?, loved it too.

    • Good news on two fronts! 1. I’m really glad you liked this recipe and that it was a hit with your husband. Happy Anniversary! and 2. I found a replacement video. Enjoy the rocking out!

  14. Theresa says:

    No oil on the eggplant before broiling?

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