If the summer bounty in eggplants is making you wonder how the hell people eat these things, here’s the easiest tastiest thing I know of to do with one. Much less fuss than eggplant parmigiana, though that is also delicious…
So the trick is no more than one tablespoon of tahini per eggplant. That’s enough to give it richness without bitterness, and without completely drowning the delicate sweetness of the eggplant. Did you know eggplant had a flavor? Now you do!
(The chips in the photo are Flamous falafel chips, which are surprisingly addictive.)
This is not so much a recipe as a technique and a ratio.
Take your eggplant(s) and stab each one with a paring knife a few times. Then char it/them, either over a gas flame, under a broiler, or in the coals of your campfire. Use tongs to turn them: your fingers are precious to someone. (Possibly even yourself.)
Hang around while this is happening. Kitchen fires are nobody’s friend, and the smell of charring is a good sign it’s time to flip the thing.
When this is done, pull them out and set them aside to cool. They don’t have to be stone cold, just comfortable to handle. Cut each eggplant in half and use a spoon to scrape the delicious juicy insides into a bowl. Some people like bits of the charred skin left in.
Then add, per each eggplant:
1-3 cloves garlic minced fine, or roasted and squeezed.
Juice of 1/2 lemon or lime (You can toss in the zest, too)
1 scant tbsp tahini
a healthy pinch of cumin
salt to taste (smoked if you have it)
and paprika, ras el hanout, or harissa seasoning, also to taste.
Mash this up, or puree it if you have that technology.
Eat on things, or with a spoon.
(Yes, I’m serving it with pico de gallo. It’s farmshare season: everything comes with pico de gallo.)