Thursday, February 17, 2011

Day 186

Baba Ghanoush: Every now and then, I manage to find something new from a cuisine that I've experienced plenty of times. I've eaten Middle Eastern/Mediterranean food on several occasions, and I've had the ubiquitous stuff (falafel, gyro, hummus, etc.) more times than I can count. However, when I spotted baba ghanoush on YDFM's salad bar a couple days ago, I knew it was time to finally try it. I've been meaning to order it whenever I saw it again on a Middle Eastern menu, but I haven't been to any of my faves in town for that type of cuisine lately. For now, this version from the YDFM would have to do.

Baba Ghanoush is apparently much like hummus, but made primarily from eggplant instead of chickpeas. The eggplant is cooked, then mashed with a variety of seasonings. I love hummus and could eat it daily, so I was looking forward to giving this a shot with my lunch today. I didn't get much of it from the buffet, but enough to formulate an opinion.
Sorry about the picture - I had a really hard time getting the small amount to look decent while being plated on the to-go container. Anyway, my first impression upon trying was the overwhelming lemony flavor. Maybe whoever made it used too much, but it was a bit off-putting. The second thing I tasted was garlic - lots of it. The eggplant had a nice, smooth texture, but the lemon and garlic both left an aftertaste that didn't go away until I downed a big glass of water. There was also a spicy note that I couldn't quite identify, and it made me sweat a little bit. Overall, I can't say I enjoyed it, which surprised me. Maybe I was unlucky enough to get a bad batch from YDFM, but I'd definitely be willing to try it again to compare.

If anyone knows where I can get a authentic version of baba ghanoush, please let me know. I don't want to give up on it based on this negative first impression.


  1. Mediterranean Grill has a good baba ghanouj (next to Rainbow Natural Foods on N. Decatur).

  2. Thanks for the comment. I've actually eaten at the Midtown location several times, but never tried their baba ghanoush. I'll try it next time, for sure!

  3. The best baba that I have had is at Cafe Agora. The stuff even made my eggplant averse hub enjoy it, for once.