If you like baba ghanoush as a dip, how about as a salad dressing? It’s got the smooth tang of eggplant, tahini and lemon with garlic and olive oil. It’s a creamy, vegan salad dressing with no egg or mayonnaise. This recipe tells how to make either one, or both!
1medium eggplantabout 1 lb. total, cut into 1 inch slices, plus olive oil to brush on
2clovesgarlic roastedor 1 clove raw, pressed - see instructions
1/2fresh lemonjuiced, or more to taste
1/2tspsalt or more to taste
Cumin or corianderoptional (pinch of each to taste)
1tablespoonextra virgin olive oilplus more to drizzle
For the salad dressing
1/2cupstore-bought or homemade baba ghanoush
2tablespoonsolive oil or other mild oil
3tablespoonswater or more as desired
For the Baba ghanoush
Slice the eggplant, place the slices on a rimmed baking sheet and brush lightly on all cut surfaces with olive oil. If you want to use roasted garlic in your baba ghanoush, place the unpeeled cloves on the baking sheet with the eggplant.
Bake for about 20 minutes at 400 degrees F or until the eggplant is soft when poked with a fork. Allow to cool.
Remove any large areas of seeds with a spoon and discard.
Scrape the remaining eggplant flesh off the skin into your stick blender container. I usually only remove the skin if there are large areas of it, such as from the two side-slices of the eggplant.
Add the tahini, garlic, lemon, cayenne and salt to the blender container. Pulse until the ingredients are well blended but not pureed smooth; the texture should be as if fork-mashed.
Taste and add more salt or lemon if needed. I’ve had baba ghanoush that had so much lemon I couldn’t eat it, so don’t overdo. The lemon will not only complement the flavors and enhance the salt, but will keep the eggplant from turning brown.
Spoon into a bowl, reserving ½ cup for your dressing.
Drizzle with olive oil, also depending on the preferences of your eaters. Serve with pita chips or vegetable dippers.
For the dressing
Mix the 1/2 cup baba ghanoush, olive oil, lemon juice and water together. Taste and adjust in case it needs more salt or even more cayenne pepper.
Add more water depending on how thick you like your dressing. The thicker it is, the more it can stand up to greens that still have water on them. It will thicken in the refrigerator too, since olive oil solidifies when cold. Because of this, you may wish to spoon the dressing on rather than pour.
Removing seeds helps prevent any bitterness that may occur if the seeds are chopped during processing. This is why I recommend using a stick blender rather than a food processor or high-speed blender.