Smoky brinjal dip

 
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Got a party coming up? Dips are the perfect sharing food to get everyone mingling over the buffet table and are easy to make in batches. Not only are they delicious, they are a great way to pack nutrition into your body (especially the homemade ones) and they can be stored in the fridge for long periods of time - perfect leftovers to make your very own buddha bowl the next day (stay tuned for our guide to build-your-own-buddha-bowl). This smoky brinjal dip will be the star of your next dinner party. 

Brinjals are great for health. The levels of fibre, vitamin C and B6 are excellent for heart health and their high levels of anti-oxidants are great for the liver. Although not always the most popular vegetable, try the recipe given below and Iā€™m confident we can change your mind with its creamy texture and that smoky flavour that does wonders. This is a great alternative to babaganoush- the ever popular Middle Eastern dip- but in my opinion- much better!

Ingredients

1 large brinjal

1/3 cup organic tahini paste

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

2 tbsp. of your homemade pomegranate molasses

The juice of half a lemon

2 garlic cloves, chopped really finely

Handful of mint leaves, chopped

Sea salt and cracked black pepper

Seeds from 1/2 pomegranate

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What to do

  1. First you need to char the brinjal. You do this by burning the whole brinjal on a gas flame. Put the brinjal directly on a moderate flame for around 15 minutes, turning frequently with metal tongs, until the flesh is soft and collapsing, and the skin is totally burnt all over.

  2. When it's cool enough to touch, cut the brinjal open and scoop out the flesh and drain in a sieve over a bowl (the burnt brinjal will release a lot of water as it cools). Discard the burnt skin. Around 30 minutes should do the trick.

  3. Chop the brinjal flesh roughly and put in a big bowl. Add the tahini, lemon juice, homemade pomegranate molasses (see recipe below), 2 garlic cloves, mint leaves, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Mix well with a wooden spoon. Take a blender and blend roughly half the mix- so half is really smooth and half still has texture. Then mix it all up again with the wooden spoon so it is evenly mixed.

  4. If it is too thick, add a touch more olive oil and a splash of water before stirring again. You want to be able to dip some lavash or fresh sourdough into it to scoop it up. Taste and check the salt and pepper - adjust to your preferences.
    Transfer the mixture into a nice serving bowl and smooth out the surface with the back of a spoon in a circular motion, starting in the middle towards the edge of the bowl. This will make it look lovely in the bowl.  Drizzle over a little extra virgin olive oil and some more of your homemade molasses, and sprinkle over a handful of pomegranate seeds, torn mint leaves and the zest of a lemon and it will look absolutely gorgeous on your buffet table!

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