Will not speak for other expats, but this is the one dish that beckons after arrival. Something about that lemony, silky, garlicky, smokey eggplant cream is all that one needs to feel acclimated once again.
- 1 large shiny eggplant, about 1 pound
- 1 lemon
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1 tbsp of tahini
- olive oil
- Char the eggplant over an open flame, either on a gas stove or on a BBQ grill; once the skin is blackened all over, dip into a bowl of cold water to cool it and peel it; place the eggplant on a colander and let it drain.
- Mash it with a meat mallet and add the juice of a lemon, a teaspoon of garlic (mashed in a mortar with a dash of salt) and just a touch of tahini (You don’t want the taste of tahini to be noticeable).
- Taste, drizzle with a filet of olive oil and serve with pita.
NOTE: m’tabbal is a word meaning seasoned or spiced.