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Middle Eastern–Style Eggplant Spread

Middle Eastern–Style Eggplant Spread
Serves 4
This dip hits all the marks: sweet, sour, smoky, and spicy. Dunk in veggies or chips, or enjoy the spread in lieu of mayonnaise on your sandwich.
  1. 2 Asian eggplants
  2. 2 tablespoons olive oil
  3. Kosher salt, to taste
  4. 2 yellow onions, chopped
  5. 4 cloves garlic
  6. 4 tablespoons tahini
  7. 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  8. ¼ cup labneh or whole-milk Greek yogurt
  9. ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
  10. ¼ teaspoon ground Aleppo pepper (or another hot dried chili, such as cayenne)
  11. ¼ teaspoon ground Urfa chile (optional)
  12. 2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
  13. Ground black pepper, to taste
  1. Heat oven to 375°F. Halve eggplants lengthwise, place cut side up on a parchment-lined baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, and season with salt. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until eggplant is lightly browned. Remove from oven, and cool to room temperature.
  2. While eggplant is cooking, heat 1 tablespoon oil in a pan over low heat. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and translucent, about 10 minutes. Add garlic cloves and cook for another 5 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
  3. Once eggplant is cool enough to handle, scrape flesh into a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Add the onion-garlic mixture, tahini, lemon juice, and labneh, and pulse 5 to 10 times. Add paprika, Aleppo pepper, Urfa chile, and pomegranate molasses, and pulse until thick and evenly combined. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed.
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Photo Credit: Igor Dutina | Shutterstock