Baba Ghanoush, Mutabal o paté de berenjenas
The Otoman Empire has left some negative footprints in history, even after its decline; among them a conflict which last over hundred years (I mean the Middle East conflict after WWI). As this is a gastronomy blog (the best one in 2015 according to premios Bitácoras), I will just leave you one of its positive traces: the gastronomy, and in its recipe is included this Baba Ghanoush (بابا غنوج ). It’s also known as Mutabal and in just places eggplant pâté. At home, we make it Greek heritage, melitzanosalata, ( μελιτζανοσαλάτα) one of the most famous mezzes in Greece.
Together with Hummus or muhammara, are mezzes of the countries at Maghreb, where it is known as Mutabal; in this area, they are used to adding pomegranate seed and even its juice while making it. It is original from Lebanon although it can be found in other place in the Middle East. It seems that Syria and Lebanon name it as Baba Ganoush, which means something such as pampered/sweet/cuddly and tempting referring to the sweetness and intense flavor of this dish of the Arab cuisine.
One of the basic ingredients is Tahini (roasted and crushed sesame seeds) and the other, if you want to give it a smoked touch, sesame oil. Just get them if you are planning to eat Baba Ghanoush or Hummus frequently, as the jar is quite big. (For instance, in the last book I’ve read by Matilde Asensi, Dispara, yo ya estoy muerto, the characters are eating it constantly).
Baba ganoush, mutabal or eggplant pâte
Travel with your palate, I mean be a traveler being going abroad and teach your kids to open their minds to other cultures, not just fast food. Tell them to practise the motto Food for Thought, and think what is behind after every recipe. In Mallorca, we eat this dip, Baba Ghanoush or Mutabal with oil cookies, although the tradition is eat it with pita bread.