Syrian-Inspired Baba Ghanoush Penne

Syrian baba ghanoush is typically made without tahini and therefore does not have the creamy texture of the well-known store-bought version of baba ghanoush. It is instead colorful, fresh and full of flavor. Serve this delicious dish over a healthy bed of Chickapea noodles for a well-rounded meal. Add a pinch of serving salt over each portion to really make all the flavors pop. This meal is gluten-free, nut-free, soy-free and vegan. 

Syrian Inspired Baba Ghanoush Penne

  • Prep Time:  20 minutes
  • Cook Time 1 Hour
  • Total Time:  1 Hour 20 minutes
  • Course: Dinner
  • Cuisine: Syrian
  • Servings:  4

 Ingredients:

  • 1 package Chickapea Penne
  • 1 Tbsp salt
  • 2 fresh eggplants, washed and punctured with a fork several times
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbsp pomegranate or cranberry juice
  • ½ tsp sugar
  • 3 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 large fresh tomato, seeds removed and chopped
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, seeds and stem removed and chopped
  • 1 red bell peppers, seeds and stem removed and chopped
  • ¼ cup Pomegranate jewels
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil, garnish
  • Pomegranate molasses to taste, optional garnish

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to broil, place the oven rack in the bottom third of the oven.
  2. Place both punctured eggplants on a foil-lined, broil safe baking tray.
  3. Broil the eggplants in the oven, turning every 3-5 minutes until the skin looks blackened, the time this takes will depend on the size and heat of your oven, 20 minutes or more is a basic guide).
  4. Leaving the eggplants in the oven, adjust the temperature to 450°F and bake them for 30 minutes or until very tender (a fork should meet no resistance when pushed through the skin near the stem).
  5. Remove the eggplants from the oven, cut a long line up the side of each splitting them open and allow to cool.
  6. Once cool enough to handle, remove and discard the burnt skin and stem of each eggplant.
  7. Transfer the white flesh of the eggplant to a food processer.
  8. Add garlic, lemon juice, cranberry/ pomegranate juice, sugar and salt to the food processer.
  9. Pulse to combine but do not over-process, the ideal consistency should be slightly chunky, not a puree.
  10. Transfer the eggplant mixture to a medium bowl and fold in half of the bell peppers, parsley and tomato. Set aside to allow the flavors to mix.
  11. Prepare Chickapea Penne to package specifications, (heat 16 cups of water in a large pot over high heat until boiling. Add pasta and 1 Tbsp of salt to the water, decrease heat to maintain a gentle boil. Stir and cook pasta for 7 minutes).
  12. Drain Pasta and rinse with cool water.
  13. Plate pasta as desired.
  14. Top each serving with a generous helping of baba ghanoush.
  15. Drizzle high-quality olive oil and optional pomegranate molasses over each serving.
  16. Top each plate with pomegranate jewels remaining bell peppers, tomato, and parsley.
  17. Enjoy!

Recipe Notes:

  • If you have pomegranate molasses, omit pomegranate/cranberry juice, sugar and ½ the lemon juice and use 2 Tbsp pomegranate molasses instead when pulsing the baba ghanoush in the food processor.
  • Prepared baba ghanoush will keep in the fridge for 2-3 days, so it is possible to prepare it ahead and top pasta when ready to eat.
  • Unused baba ghanoush makes a great side or dip for 2-3 days after making.