Make a bowl of this Walnut Baba Ganoush with fresh, seasonal eggplant. You'll love the smooth dip with the crunchy, nutty walnuts!
Let's face it, eggplant usually kind of sucks. Out of all the vegetables, it is probably my least favorite. It takes a lot of other flavors to make it taste good. And sure, eggplant rollatini is AMAZING, but that is because it is fried, smothered in sauce and cheese and all kinds of unhealthy goodness. And eggplant rollatini is also kind of a pain to make.
Just my luck, we've been getting a lot of eggplant in our CSA this year. After trying to improvise all kinds of healthier recipes with it, I decided to give up and go back to this classic - baba ganoush. This is probably the only eggplant recipe that is healthy, easy to make, tastes good, and has a nice texture. Or rather, it does not have a noticeable eggplant texture because it has the texture of a dip, and that is good enough for me. The garlic and the lemon juice really make this dip delicious, and the olive oil makes everything nice and smooth. I did throw in some walnuts into this baba ganoush for a nice crunch, and that is my favorite part.
My dinner last night actually consisted of wasa crackers and a decent size bowl of this walnut baba ganoush, and I was satisfied. Aldo dipped a few vegetables into the baba ganoush, said it was good, and reheated some pizza. I don't blame him - he doesn't have weird eating habits like me, whereas I think a bowl of baba ganoush sounds like a normal meal.
I had 2 large eggplant from the CSA last week (a white one and a purple one). I made two batches of this walnut baba ganoush.
Walnut Baba Ganoush
Makes: 1 medium bowl of dip. Total time: about 1.5 hours (10 minutes if you roast the eggplant in advance).
- 1 lb eggplant
- 1 garlic clove, pressed or minced
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1-2 tablespoons lemon juice, to taste
- 1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon salt, to taste
- 1/2 cup crushed walnuts
- Cut the eggplant in half and roast it at 400F for 40 minutes, or until it is fully cooked and a fork can easily pierce it. Remove from oven and allow to cool until it can be handled.
- Peel the skin off the eggplant. It doesn't have to be 100% peeled, but the less peel the smoother the baba ganoush will be. Chop the cooked peeled eggplant into rough ~2 inch pieces.
- Add the chopped eggplant, minced garlic clove, olive oil, lemon juice and 1/4 teaspoon salt to a food processor and process until smooth, pulsing it a few seconds at a time. Give it a taste and see if you want to add more lemon juice or salt.
- In a medium bowl, combine the baba ganoush with the crushed walnuts and stir. Serve in a bowl and use it as a dip for vegetables, crackers, or as a spread on crusty bread.