Michelle Karam hosts Mediterranean Medley. On her first webisode, she prepares hummus. Michelle is of Armenian descent and her culture very much influences her passion for cooking.
Some parts of the Levant, baba ghanoush is a starter or appetizer; in Egypt it is mostly served as a side-dish or salad. It is made of aubergine with finely diced onions, tomatoes, and other vegetables blended in. It is normally served with a dressing of oil and pomegranate concentrate. It is made of roasted, peeled, and mashed aubergine, blended with tahini, garlic, salt, and lemon juice and topped with olive oil. Cumin and chili powder can be added. A similar dish is known as mutabbal in the Levant. In the traditional method, the eggplant is first roasted in an oven for approximately 30 minutes. The softened flesh is scooped out, squeezed to remove excess water, and is then pureed with the tahini. There are many variants of the recipe, especially the seasoning. Seasonings include garlic, lemon juice, ground cumin, salt, mint, and parsley. When served on a plate or bowl, it is traditional to drizzle the top with olive oil.
(In Photo: Syrian Style baba Ghanoush)
It is eaten in Turkey, where it is called patlıcan salatası (meaning “eggplant salad”). And, in Greece, it is called μελιτζανοσαλάτα – melitzanosalata (meaning “eggplant salad”). An Israeli variation of the salad is made with mayonnaise. There is also Bulgarian eggplant salad/spread, called Kiopolu Кьополу.
Indian Baingan Bartha is a dish similar to baba ghanoush. It is similarly prepared by grilling eggplant over open charcoal flame to impart a smoky flavor to the flesh. It is then cooked with an assortment of spices, tomatoes, garlic, and onions. It is commonly served with breads like Paratha, Roti, and Naan.
In West India, yogurt and chopped onion are added to roasted eggplant along with various seasonings. The dish, typically served as a side, is called Bharta.(Wikepedia)