This is not an obvious recipe for my blog.
You see, eggplant and I are not friends. And I did not love cooking this recipe, because I had to touch it and smell it and it was terrible and yet here we are. The results were worth it!
Eggplant skeptics, you can feel comfortable here.
The dip is inspired by baba ganouj, but for this recipe I have taken the liberty of adding a bunch of greek yogurt. It gives it a really cooling contrast to the spicy fries, and adds some extra moisture.
Inspired by batata harra (Lebanese potatoes), these fries are baked with spices and herbs to give them a crispy, spicy coating, and finished off with a twist of lime.
Batata Harra Style Fries
For the Fries
- 2 large potatoes
- 2-3 Tbsp Olive oil
- 2 Tbso minced onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 green chili, seeded and minced
- 1 Tbsp fresh coriander / cilantro, finely chopped
- ¼ tsp chili powder
- ¼ tsp dried coriander
- ½ lime
For the dip
- 1 small eggplant
- ½ cup yogurt
- 1 small clove garlic
- 1 Tbsp tahini
- Juice of 1 lemon
To Make the Fries
- Pre-heat the oven to 200C / 390F
- Slice the potatoes into long, chunky fries. I suggest leaving the skins on for this recipe.
- Boil a saucepan of water and then remove from heat. Soak the fries in the water for about 20 minutes. Do not add any more heat- you just want the fries to soak, not cook. Doing this will help them to get a soft inside.
- Drain, and leave to completely dry out. (This a good time to make the dip)
- Toss the potatoes in olive oil to coat, and then add to a baking tray.
- After 20 minutes, remove from the oven. Flip the fries carefully (they are prone to breaking at this stage) and sprinkle the onion, garlic, green chili and dried spices on top.
- Return to the oven and bake for another 20 minutes. They will at this point be fully cooked. But if they aren’t quite crispy enough (it depends on the strength of your oven’s fan and whether there are any cool spots in your oven) I suggest grilling them for another 5-10 minutes until you get your preferred crispiness.
- Now pile them on a plate and add the cilantro/fresh coriander and a squeeze of lime juice.
To Make the DIp
- Cut the eggplant in half and sprinkle salt on each side.
- Roast in the oven at 200C / 390F for about half an hour.
- Leave to cool off, until you can comfortably handle it.
- Scoop the flesh out of the skin and put into a food processor.
- Add the remaining ingredients and blend until soft and creamy.