Three Lebanese Dips & Spicy Pita Bread

Hummus, Tahini Sauce and Baba Ghannouj

This selection of dips makes a nice starter, snack to serve as guests arrive or in between courses.

Portions: Makes about 500g of Hummus, 300g of Tahini Sauce and 600g of Baba Ghannouj

Preparation: 10 minutes

Ingredients

Hummus

  • 400g canned chickpea
  • 2 tbsp. of tahini
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • Salt to taste

To Serve

  • 1 tbsp. chopped flat leaf parsley
  • 1 pinch of paprika

Tahini Sauce

  • 150g tahini
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 100ml water
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 pinch salt

To Serve

  • 1 tbsp. finely chopped flat leaf parsley

Baba Ghannouj

  • 2 aubergine (about 700g)
  • Juice 1 lemon
  • 2 tbsp. Tahini
  • 2 cloves garlic crushed finely
  • 1 tsp. cumin powder
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 2 tbsp. chopped parsley
  • 1 pinch salt

To Serve

  • 1 tbsp. flat leaf parsley, finely chopped

Pita Bread

  • 9-12 oval shaped pita bread (medium)
  • 1 tbsp. Chinese chili oil (available from most Chinese food stores)
  • Or 1 tbsp. peanut or olive oil with 1 tsp. of pimento (smoked paprika) or plain paprika
  • 1 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • Maldon Salt and Pepper

Method

Hummus
  1. Hummus: Place the first 5 ingredients with a pinch of salt in a food processor or mortar and pestle and blend until you have a thick smooth mixture. You may need to add a little more lemon juice or water and salt to taste. Serve or place in a sealed container and refrigerate until ready to serve. The dip will last up to 5 days.
  2. To serve: Bring the dip to room temperature if refrigerated. Place the dip in a bowl sprinkled with parsley and paprika. Serve with plain or Chargrilled pita bread cut into wedges.
Tahini Sauce
  1. Tahini: Place the garlic and tahini in a food processor or bowl with a pinch of salt, mix or blend until combined.
  2. Mix the lemon juice and water together in a pouring container. Gradually add this to the tahini while you have the food processor running or while mixing, until you have a dipping consistency (not to runny). Serve or place in a sealed container and refrigerate until ready to sere.
  3. To Serve: Serve the dip at room temperature sprinkled with parsley with pita bread.
This dip may be made into a sauce for kebab's and falafel’s by adding a little more liquid so that it is at a pouring consistency. Baba Ghannouj (Aubergine Dip)
  1. Baba Ghannouj: Place the aubergine's on a moderate barbecue and cook for 30 to 40 minutes or place in a hot oven. Turn them regularly until they are soft and cooked through.
  2. Peel off the skin while they are still warm and roughly chop the flesh.
  3. Place the aubergine flesh with the tahini, garlic, cumin, paprika and salt in a food processor or mortar and pestle and puree. Gradually add in the lemon juice to taste and blend in the olive oil. Place the mixture in a bowl and beat in the parsley. You should have a smooth dip consistency. Serve or place in a sealed container in the refrigerator.
  4. To Serve: Serve the dip at room temperature in a bowl garnished with parsley and served with pita bread cut into wedges.
Chargrilled Pita This bread is brilliant straight from the barbecue and is usually demolished in seconds, so make plenty. They are ideally cooked when the barbecue is still hot, as they need only a couple of minutes.
  1. Cut the pita bread into 4 or more triangle shaped wedges.
  2. Mix the oils together with a little salt and pepper, and the paprika if using in a container large enough to hold the bread.
  3. Place the bread in the bowl and toss in the oil. The bread should all be covered in oil but not saturated. If you need to add a little more oil.
  4. When your barbecues is hot place the bread on carefully and cook for 1-2 minutes on each side (this is dependent on temperature of your barbecue). The bread should have distinct grill marks and be hot.
  5. To Serve: Serve the bread with along side the dips or on its own or with a little extra chili oil to dip it in.
  • You may vary the flavours of the oil according to your taste, try with a little pesto and olive oil, or garlic and chopped fresh herbs such as thyme and rosemary.