Eggplant is a popular ingredient in Middle Eastern cooking. Also called the aubergine or patlican in some countries, the eggplant is a versatile vegetable. Well, actually, the eggplant is technically a fruit, but like the tomato, it is referred to as a vegetable.
In Middle Eastern cooking, you will find eggplants that are stuffed, fried, used in salads, soups, and many other delicious dishes. Because the eggplant is bitter, after slicing the eggplant, soak the eggplant in heavily salted water. Rinse with cold water and pat dry. This will remove much of the bitter taste. Eggplant skin and flesh are extremely absorbent of oil and other ingredients. This is perfect for stuffing or in sauces, soups, and casseroles.
Enjoy Moutabel dip with pita bread or crackers.
1/3 cup tahini
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 to 3 green chile peppers (to taste)
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon pepper (to taste)
# Gather the ingredients. Preheat oven to 400 F.
# Place eggplant on a lightly greased baking sheet.
# Roast for 30 minutes, or until eggplant is tender. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
# Once eggplants have cooled, peel the skins. They should come off fairly easy. If you are having a tough time, just scoop the eggplant from the skin with a spoon. Set aside.
# In a food processor, combine and blend the tahini, garlic, and peppers.
# Add the eggplant and blend well.
# Add the olive oil.
# Transfer to a serving bowl. Stir in the lemon juice and sprinkle with salt and pepper.