Sunday, June 01, 2008


Dinner 6/01

Baba Ganoush

Okra, Coriander and Tomato


Pomegranate Eggplant

Green Beans and Tomato

Pita Bread

A table full of Mezze (or Meze), little bowls of appetizer-sized bites, served along with pita bread. We made the tabbouleh earlier in the day (Paula Wolfert's recipe from "Mediterranean Grains & Greens"), letting the bulgur soak up the flavors by chilling it for a few hours.

The green beans were a riff on loubieh, slow cooked with onions and tomatoes, which doesn't destroy the green beans as you might think. Instead it infuses them, melding the flavors and make sthem melt in your mouth.

The okra were broken down into thin rings and cooked with onions in olive oil for 20 minutes, then the tomatoes, coriander and a little water were added and cooked for an additional 20 minutes on low.

I peeled and smoked half of the eggplant in cherry and apple wood for 20 minutes, then baked it for 20 minutes longer before putting it in the vita-mix along with tahini and the other spices -- a definite winner -- the smokiness wasn't overwhelming and brought out a rich depth that is sometime lacking in commercial versions.

The other half of the eggplant was cut into half moons, sauteed and with onions, tomatoes, basil and eventually pomegranate syrup to create a silky, lightly perfumed dish that was served at room temp. I could have eaten twice as much of this...

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