Barbeque roasted baba ganoush with lemon and pomegranate
Smokey, creamy ribbons of barbeque roasted aubergine topped with the fresh pop of pomegranate seeds, lemon, garlic, and mint. This baba ganoush is perfect served as a side, or piled into flatbreads and topped with falafel.
Ottolenghi is perhaps one of my favourite cooks of all time. Seriously. There's just something honest about his food - the flavour pairings are unique but simple; a different perspective on flavours you already know and love. Like his marinated capsicum salad - simply marinated in balsamic drizzle, thyme and garlic, the salad itself doesn't seem anything particularly different. But it is just something about the combination of flavours in exactly the right way, which lifts the whole dish. The work of a true chef with the kind of understanding of flavours which we mere mortals could never quite get right.
His interpretation of baba ganoush is the same - it follows the basic principals of baba ganoush, with smokey barbeque roasted eggplant cooked until it starts to melt into itself, the fresh zing of garlic and lemon. But rather than whipping the whole thing into a creamy dip which you can scoop onto crackers, the aubergine is left in ribbons - almost a salad. The result is something a bit more texturally substantial, which I love piled into flatbreads and topped with falafel.
The addition of pomegranate adds a final flourish, the little gems popping in your mouth as you eat, releasing sweet little bursts of freshness. If you've never worked with pomegranate, you'll love this experience. The hard outer shell contains little pockets of the seeds - it's like nothing else I've seen. They can be a challenge to get out without causing a mess of pink juice. I find the easiest way to do this is using this method.
Even if this is outside your comfort zone, I highly recommend giving this one a go.