Monday, August 20, 2007

Mediterranean Feast

In honor of a great dinner out with good friends a couple weeks ago I thought I would share my favorites recipes for some yummy Meditereanean fair. I know these may seem out of the box to some people but trust me they are yummy! Don't tell the kids what it's made from, just focus on the finger food factor and they will eat it up! So yummy and good for you. DJ and I have had carpet picnics for dinner and just done appetizers. Pick out a great movie spread out a blanket and get cozy. Hope you all enjoy.

All of these can be eaten with cut up pita bread, french bread cubes and fresh veggies.


1 large eggplant (about 1 pound)
1 glove garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, plus more for garnish
2 tablespoons tahini
2 tablespoons lemon juice

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.

Prick eggplant with a fork and place on a cookie sheet lined with foil. Bake the eggplant until it is soft inside, about 20 minutes. Alternatively, grill the eggplant over a gas grill, rotating it around until the skin is completely charred, about 10 minutes. Let the eggplant cool. Cut the eggplant in half lengthwise, drain off the liquid, and scoop the pulp into a food processor. Process the eggplant until smooth and transfer to a medium bowl.
On a cutting board, work garlic and 1/4 teaspoon salt together with the flat side of a knife, until it forms a paste. Add the garlic-salt mixture to the eggplant. Stir in the parsley, tahini, and lemon juice. Season with more salt, to taste. Garnish with additional parsley.

Spicy Hummus

1 (14.5 ounce) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained
2 rounded tablespoons tahini sesame paste
A drizzle extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon crushed pepper flakes
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1 clove garlic,
crushed Coarse salt
1/2 lemon, juiced

Combine beans, tahini, oil, pepper flakes, cumin, coriander, garlic, salt, and lemon juice in food processor bowl and grind into a smooth paste. Cover and let stand about 1 hour for flavors to blend. Before serving drizzle a small amount of olive oil on top and sprinkle with some parsley.


1 cup bulgur wheat (fine-medium grind)
2 cups hot water
1 pound ripe tomatoes, seeded and chopped (about 2 cups)
1 bunch green onions, white and green part, finely chopped (about 1 cup)
1 cucumber, halved, seeded and diced (about 2 cups)
2 large bunches fresh flat-leaf parsley, leaves finely chopped (about 2 cups)
1 bunch fresh mint leaves, finely chopped (about 1/2 cup)
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 lemons, juiced
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Put the bulgur in a large bowl and pour in the hot water. Cover with a dish or plastic wrap and let stand for about 30 to 45 minutes to rehydrate. Drain in a strainer, pressing with the back of a wooden spoon to squeeze out as much water as possible.

In a mixing bowl, combine the tomatoes, onions, cucumber, parsley, and mint. Toss the salad well to incorporate the ingredients; season with cumin, salt and pepper. Add the bulgur; moisten with the lemon juice and olive oil. Fold everything together to incorporate the ingredients. The flavor will improve if the tabbouleh sits for a few hours. Serve at room temperature.


Amie said...

There's no way I'm brave enough to try these, but thanks for posting! You're such a creative culinary expert!