One of my favourite parts about travelling is the different food. I love discovering delectable dishes to satisfy my palette. Middle Eastern food has always been a favourite, so my taste buds have been spoiled for the last three weeks, indulging in homemade hummus (or humoose, as pronounced here), tabbouleh, curry, couscous, manakish, felafel and kebah. Vegetables like okra add a refreshing surprise to salads, and even my sweet tooth has been satisfied with locally grown delicious dates. Watermelon and pomegranate seeds have been our daily dessert, being much cheaper than in Canada.
If you are not one to try new things, especially food, I encourage you to open your mind and taste buds to varied food experiences, as they not only taste wonderful (most of the time), but allow you to better connect with different cultures and ways of life.
One of my favourite snack recipes that is very popular here is an aubergine, or eggplant, dip, Baba Ganoush. Similar to hummus, it can be eaten with veggies, pita bread or as a delicious spread! Here is a great local recipe. The best part is you can find these ingredients at home!
For 1 large eggplant:
1 clove garlic, crushed
3 tbs lemon juice
½ C tahini
salt to taste
To skin the eggplant, Place in a frying pan on high heat for about 15 minutes, turning every five minutes, until charred and crispy. Using tongs, remove from heat and carefully peel off all charred skin. Using a knife, remove the ends and chop the flesh until minced. Scoop into a bowl. Make sure all skin is removed, as any bits will leave a burnt taste throughout the spread.
Add garlic and a small amount of oil to a pan on medium-high heat for a few minutes. Add eggplant and add lemon juice, tahini, parsley, and salt. Whisk/blend together until completely blended and in a paste-like form. Remember, all of these ingredients are optional. You can add more or less of each, or none at all, depending on what you like and how you like it!
Served with pita chips is a great option while it is still warm.