The hummus and eggplant caviar can be made up to 2 days in advance, or for a slacker solution you can substitute a good-quality store-bought hummus. Stephen Gibbs told us, “If you simmer canned chickpeas in water or chicken stock for 5 minutes, they will break down faster for a more creamy, fluffy texture. An Israeli chef taught me to put half of a boiled russet potato in the mix for supercreamy hummus.”
Game plan: For the pita crisps, you can substitute lavash crackers.
This recipe was featured as part of our Killer Apps story.
1In a food processor, purée the chickpeas, tahini, 3 tablespoons of the olive oil, the lemon juice, paprika, and garlic until smooth, adding more olive oil if the mixture seems too thick. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
For the eggplant caviar:
1Heat the oven to 375°F. Prick the eggplant with a fork on all sides to allow steam to escape. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake for 35 minutes or until it is soft and collapsed.
2Scrape the eggplant flesh out with your fingers or a fork, discarding the skin. Coarsely chop the flesh and place in a mixing bowl. Add all the remaining ingredients, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, and mix until creamy. Add additional vinegar and lemon juice if you prefer more acidity.
3To serve, take a toasted pita wedge and top with a teaspoon of hummus and then a teaspoon of eggplant caviar.
Note: The hummus and eggplant caviar can be made up to 2 days ahead of time. Toast the pita and assemble just before serving.
Beverage pairing:Falanghina Dei Feudi di San Gregorio, Italy. This wine comes from the dry south of Italy, where the Falanghina grape has evolved to produce rich, medium-bodied wines with a beautiful balance of savory and sweet, accented by some pepper and spice. These flavors should pair well with the hummus, and the creamy textures of both should make a nice match.