Serves 4 to 6
1 large eggplant
3/4 cup tahini
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
1 cup water
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon kosher salt
5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 large tomatoes, thinly sliced
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
5 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 pound ground beef
1 pound ground lamb
2 teaspoons Baharat (recipe below)
2 teaspoons sweet Hungarian paprika
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon toasted pine nuts
1 loaf crusty bread
Cut the eggplant into ¼ inch-thick slices and sprinkle with salt. Let it sit for 1 hour to allow the excess moisture to drip off.
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Combine all the ingredients for the tahini sauce in a food processor and blend until smooth and creamy. Set aside until ready to use.
Place the eggplant slices in a large baking dish and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Bake in the oven for 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and place the tomato slices on top of the eggplant. Set the baking dish aside but keep the oven on.
Heat the remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat and add the onion. Sauté until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and tomato paste and cook for another 5 minutes. Add the ground beef and lamb and season with the baharat, paprika, cumin, 2 teaspoons salt, and the pepper. Cook for another 20 minutes.
Remove from the heat and stir in the parsley. Drain off the excess liquid and transfer the ground meat to the baking dish with the eggplant and tomato slices.
Spread a generous layer of tahini sauce on the top, about ¼ inch thick. Bake in the oven until golden brown, about 30 minutes.
Garnish with the pine nuts and serve with a side of crusty bread.
Makes about 1 1/3 cups
2 tablespoons ground black pepper
3 tablespoons allspice
3 tablespoons ground coriander
5 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground cloves
3 tablespoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
4 teaspoons ground nutmeg
2 tablespoons sweet Hungarian paprika
1 tablespoon dried lemon zest (optional)
4 teaspoons dried ginger (optional)
Combine all the ingredients together until well mixed. Store in an airtight jar and keep away from direct sunlight.