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Baba Ganouoj a las Brasas (página 2 de 2)

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Increíble caviar de berenjena libanés asado directamente sobre las brasas y servido con crujiente pan lavash y acompañamientos.
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El Seasonado del baba ganouj es diferente en cada país, e incluso en Líbano no hay dos familias que lo hagan igual.  Los ingredientes usuales son limón, aceite de oliva, tahini, yoghurt, menta fresca, comino, sal, pimienta, cilantro y almendras molidas.  Puedes utilizarlos todos, añadiéndolos gradualmente y probando durante todo el proceso.  O puedes hacerlo más simple y utilizar sólo algunos para concentrarte en el maravilloso sabor ahumado de la pulpa de la berenjena. 

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II.  El Pan Lavash (Pan Árabe) y sus Acompañamientos

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Retira los tallos de un manojo de tomillo fresco y pica finamente las hojas.

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En una sartén de fondo grueso vierte media taza de ajonjolí (semillas de sésamo) y dale un golpecito a la estufa para que queden bien repartidas en una capa pareja en la sartén.  Enciéndela a fuego medio y quedate ahí junto a la estufa.  En cuanto veas que las semillas se calientan, comienza a removerelas constantemente hasta que tomen un color café pálido.  Retíralas de la sartén y ponlas en un plato para detener el asado.  Este proceso convierte a las sosas semillas de ajonjolí en una especia de un sabor maravilloso.

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Mezcla el ajonjolí con las semillas de amapola y el tomilo en un mortero.  Agrega suficiente aceite de oliva para obtener una pasta espesa.  Machaca algunas de las semillas con la mano del mortero, pero deja algunas para que se conserve una cierta textura.  

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Hoy en día, el Pan Lavash se puede encontrar en la mayoría de las ciudades.  Lo partimos separando sus dos caras, lo aceitamos y lo asamos para hacer panes duros, una especie de totopos.

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Con un cuchillo abrimos el pan y separamos cuidadosamente ambas caras con la mano.  Es fácil de hacer pero hay que ser cuidadosos para no romper el delgado pan. 

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Calienta una plancha o un comal, o el horno.  Con una brocha embarra los panes con un poco de aceite y caliéntalos hasta que estén dorados y crujientes.  Les puedes añadir los acompañamientos encima antes o después de dorarlos.

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Prosigue hasta dorar todos los panes.  Ponles los acompañamientos restantes encima. 

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Sirve el baba ganouoj con los panes crujientes como entrada.  Te recomiendo preparar todo excepto el pan por anticipado y solo dorar el pan ante tus invitados en cuanto lleguen.  ¡Un platillo memorable y sofisticado!

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Me inspiró a cocinar directamente sobre las brasas un libro increíble  sobre el asado a las brasas, "La Magia del Fuego"  The Magic of Fire de William Rubel.  Este es uno de mis 20 libros de cocina favoritos, y tengo varios cientos de libros de cocina en 6 idiomas diferentes.  Necesitas conseguir este libro - las recetas, siendo todas tradicionales, son a la vez inmensamente originales.  El Sr Rubel (www.williamrubel.com) es un cocinero aficionado de California, versado en literatura y gastronomía.  Cocinó algunos de sus platillos en Chez Panisse, uno de los principales restaurantes de los Estados Unidos, y sin embargo la mayoría de las recetas utilizan sólo unos cuantos ingredientes. Una obra maestra. ¡Encarecidamente recomendado! 

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«This is some of the best cooking photography I've ever seen. I feel like I can taste it.» Stumble upon 30/08/2007

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If you do this recipe at home please let me know how it worked for you by submitting a comment or send me a picture if you can. Thanks!

15 comentarios

  • #1
  • Comment by Sherri
Since where I live doesn't usually get very cold, we don't use the fireplace very often, mostly at nights. But occasionally it gets cold enough to use it during the evening. When it does, I often wonder how I could use it to cook with (I don't have a setup that allows a pot to hang over the fire). One time I thought about using foil-covered potatoes, but I was out of potatoes at that time, and then warmed up enough we didn't use the fire again except at nights.What other foods could be cooked directly in/on coals? Corn in their husks (strings removed), peppers, maybe potatoes without foil and possibly some other roots are what come to mind. I could experiment, but if you or your readers already know the answers it would be neat to learn. Thanks for this post, I'll try it!
  • #2
  • Comment by parshu.narayanan
Lovely and delicate Lebanese dish :-). Eggplant caviar is a very chic name for what is the basis of an everyday (North) Indian take on the same ingredient! Baingan ka bharta We roast it on coals, or sometimes directly on a smaller gas-ring and peel it for the pulp too. Some indian housewives will put delicate incisions in the skin and slip in peeled garlic cloves (the tiny flavourful Indian kind, not the fat China garlic) to cook with the pulp. Once the pulp is ready, mustard oil (extra virgin, or sometimes double pressed harlot)or any other oil is heated, and chopped onions and tomatoes sautéed, and the standard Indian seasoning, turmeric and chili powder and a dash of garam masala put in, with the pulp.The smoky golden-red result is divine with hot & fluffed-out chapatis (Indian flat bread). In fact it stands so much for a smoky flavour in India that I have heard a grizzled Sikh Colonel (who had bagged three Pathan mujahids personally in Kashmir) taste his first sip of Laphroaig, wince at the Islay malt's smoky flavour and say "baingan ka bharta, yaar (pal)"
  • #3
  • Answered by fx
Sherri, you need to buy The Magic of Fire by William Rubel for many other things you can cook in your hearth.

Parshu, this is a very good remark about Laphroaig, it is indeed very peaty! I will try the baingan bartha as a final installment of my aubergine caviars of the world serie. Thanks for your visit!
  • #4
  • Comment by Claudio Lovo
I stumble upon you! Love the pics!I'm impressed!Claudio
  • #5
  • Comment by sarat kumar chalasani
A variant of this is also made in southern India,in coastal Andhra Pradesh. It's spicy onions,green chillies and various herbs are added. It's eaten with rice. I have eaten the Arabic, North Indian AND the South Indian versions.
  • #6
  • Comment by Laura
We call it egg-plant salad here, in Romania; the roasted peeled egg-plants are very well minced (even in a mixer, we don't care much for the texture)and slowly mixed with oil, like in a mayonnaise sauce. You may add a few lemon drops, to whiten it . At the end, when you think it has enough oil you add some onion, minced in tiny cubes. You spread it on bread loaves and eat it as an appetizer.I must say I visited for some time your blog and admire your cooking, photographs and your fine sense of humor. A very very nice blog!!
  • #7
  • Answered by fx
Laura thank you for your kind comments! Do you reckon Romanian cuisine has lots of Mediterranean influences? How about Turkish influences - before Vlad Dracul cast them out of his homeland, they must have left some cooking tips, right?
  • #8
  • Comment by dan
Romanian cuisine has a lot of influences, ranging from turkish to german (brought by the austro-hungarian empire in the western part of the country) and russian. Eggplant salad as described by Laura above is definitely a turkish import but with a local slant; the cooked eggplant is minced by hand or mixer and oil is added; then it is seasoned with vinegar or lemon, onion, salt/pepper. mmm, yummy. You don't find it exactly like we do it in Romania anywhere else. In summer I eat it almost daily. In winter we may add mayonese, especially if it is made from frozen/preserved eggplant. Great blog, keep it up, I enjoy it and visit often!
  • #9
  • Answered by fx
Thank you Dan for your remarks on Romanian cuisine! Let me know if you find some emblematic or extremely unusual Romanian recipe. Hope to see you around my blog soon!
Talking of romanian cuisine, some dishes you might want to try:

mici: barbecue-roasted minced meat finger food. Eat with mustard.
ciorba de burta: one of an amazing variety of ciorba (soup, it is a Turkish word), this one is based on tripe, and it is amazingly tasty. It could feature well in your category of perplexing and surprising food...
bulz ciobanesc: baked polenta "pie" with cheese
sarmale: like a cabbage-leaf dolma?
cozonac: a sweet Christmas bread

then there is a whole gang of placinta pies... And many dishes that you also find in other traditions, like schnitzel and various types of sausages.

...it is a very rich cuisine. One fantstic book on the subject is Radu Anton Roman "Savoureuse Roumanie", published in 2004 in French, which should make it very convenient for you.
  • #11
  • Answered by fx
Walter, I just ordered the Savoureuse Roumanie book, sounds quite fascinating for one like myself who thought that Vlad Dracul had ridden Romanias of the Turks once and for all!
  • #12
  • Comment by anton
I'm a foodie who lives in the Philippines and I just happened to chance upon your site. I must say, yours is probably one of the best foodie sites I've come across. The pictures are fantastic and the narrative is funny, informative, and definitely entertaining.

Coincidentally, we also have a similar eggplant-based dish here in the Philippines. It is essentially an eggplant salad that we eat together with grilled and fried foods, most notably roast pork. It consists of grilled eggplants that have been peeled and shredded, chopped tomatoes and onions, finely minced garlic and sliced chili; mixed with a dressing of light soy sauce, rice vinegar, grated ginger, and some sugar.

You will notice that there is no oil in the dressing, as it is supposed to balance out the oily tastes and flavors of grilled and fried meat or fish.

Anyway, great work on the site. Keep up the good work!
  • #13
  • Answered by fx
Anton, thanks a lot for your kind words about my site! Glad you like it, I don't know enough about Asia but would be very thrilled to visite the beautiful Philippines! Your version of the baba ganouj sounds very nice and reminds me one I had in Mumbai.
  • #14
  • Comment by Frans
Hello François-Xavier (FX) - nice name (a bit biased maybe). Anyway, I really liked your presentation of the Levantine dish baba ghannouj. I especially liked the twist to present the khubz (bread) in the fashion of the Lebanese classic 'mana'eesh bi za'atar'. Za'atar is a favourite spice blend of mine, one recommendation is to add a pinch of sumac to the mix . . . and as za'atar is a generic word for thyme or oregano, you can play with the herbs, even try savory. But the sumac adds some special sour notes that pair well with the toasted sesame.

Also, and I don't mean to sound too nerdy here, but I think Vlad II Dracul was just the father of Vlad III Tepes. I think Vlad III Tepes was the heroic but cruel king to drive out the Ottomans, and the one which Bram Stoker based his character from. His father had joined the Order of the Dragon whilst king & thus obtained his title Vlad II Dracul (the dragon). All of his sons thus were given surnames of 'Draculea' or son of Vlad Dracul. Over time, Vlad III gained the title Tepes (Impaler) because of reknowned cruelety in battle, where he executed his enemies bt impaling them on large poles. A grisly sort of crucifiction. Hope I got that all right - anyway, sorry to geek out like that, but Romania has a fascinating history and it's a wonderful place to visit. Yet another foodie destination! Cheers.

Oh, and I really like your blog, recipes, your camera and all your photos!
  • FX's answer→ Thanks, yes indeed, the one I meant is Vlad Tepes, who spend his youth in captivity at the Sultan's court in Istanbul. I will try to add sumac next time we cook this, a lovely spice it is!

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