Made a meze plate for the café, a tear ‘n share dish. I like that sort of food. In fact being able to eat with someone is a deal-breaker for any kind of relationship with me. I can’t stand people who don’t eat, who pick, who toy, who don’t dive in with gusto. Weight watchers are such a bore.
Eating and drinking should be communal and sensual.
For this plate, given the limited ingredients available to me plus the fact that the café is vegan, I made baba ganous, falafel, hummus and tzatziki with pitta and salad. Baba ganous means ‘food that mother spoils father with, like a child’. Don’t you just love Arabic names for food? Like ras-el-hanout …’everything good from the top of the shop’.
It’s difficult to make a decent baba ganous without a wood burner. That smokey taste doesn’t emerge from aubergines roasted in a gas oven in quite the same way. I also think the trick with baba ganous and hummus is not to put in too much tahini.
Take your aubergines, whole, sling ’em in the oven, forget about them for about an hour. After an hour, pull them out and peel the skins off. The skins come off easily.
Whizz up the aubergines with garlic, ground cumin, olive oil, lots of lemon juice, salt, and a small amount of tahini. Top with flat leaf parsley.
Now I know everybody knows how to make hummus. In my experiments, I’ve found the best hummus comes from using tinned not dried chick peas. And if possible those tins should be from India. I don’t know why, but Indian/Asian chick peas taste the best in hummus.
I’m still working on the perfect fart-free recipe. I like Tamsin Day-Lewis’ recipe with chopped up chilli’s.