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27 Things I Make Instead of Buy to Save Money

Are you looking for ways to save money? You're not alone! It can be tough to keep up with when you have surprise expenses.  By changing some of our daily habits, my family started to make some of our household items instead of buy them to help use reduce waste, save money, and frankly because it can be more convenient. I added the items on this list bit by bit over the years. Please do not think you have to make everything all at once! Sometimes I don’t have to make more of something because I made a bit too much the first time and we are still going through it (looking at you Must Can All the Jam! bender a few years ago.) Other times, it’s a one and done kind of thing like sewing on a button, and sometimes I buy the item instead of making it (like yogurt) because I’m too busy with other life things to keep up with the supply and demand.   Save this list of money saving ideas to your Pinterest Boards for later! Share it with your friends!  In othe

Easy Grilled Baba Ganoush Recipe

When we do Middle Eastern food for Take Out Date Night my husband often adds an order of baba ganoush (pronounced Ba-ba Gah-noosh) an eggplant dip similar to hummus and pita bread for dipping. There is an extra hint of smoky flavor in the restaurant’s recipe that really makes it sing compared to the baba ganoush I make at home. My recipe is good and gets compliments but theirs is better.

A couple of lovely eggplants and experiments later, I learned the flavor secret – grill the eggplant instead of baking it in the oven for that nice hint of smoky flavor.

 Let’s cook!


how to make grilled eggplant dip recipe
Save this recipe to your Pinterest boards for later! Share it with your friends!

Easy Middle Eastern Eggplant Dip Baba Ghanoush Recipe

This is a great recipe to make for summer grilling or BBQ parties. Naturally it was raining the day I wanted to grill the eggplant so I used this exact indoor grill to roast the eggplant instead of our outdoor grill. You can also bake the eggplant in the oven but it will not have the traditional smoky hint of flavor that you get from grilling. (Disclosure: I am including affiliate links in this post for your convenience.)


You will need the following ingredients:

1 eggplant – I usually go for a medium sized fresh eggplant. The small Japanese eggplant will also work. Japanese eggplant gives you a slightly different flavor and you’ll need to use a bunch of them to equal the amount in a traditional eggplant but if you have a garden overflowing with little eggplants – this recipe is for you!

Olive oil or your favorite neutral tasting cooking oil

4 Tablespoons of tahini – you can buy tahini here

6 Tablespoons of lemon juice – Yes you really do need all of this lemon juice to counteract the sometimes bitterness found in eggplant. Don’t worry. It doesn’t make the dip sour.

3-4 Cloves of minced garlic – or more. or less. Measure the garlic with your heart and you’ll be fine.

Optional: Parsley. 1 Tablespoon dried or 2 Tablespoons fresh. Today I am using dried parsley.


Step by Step How to Make this Recipe:


1.  Clean and cut the eggplant in half. Don’t bother peeling the eggplant.


2. Brush or spray a light coat of olive oil to the cut side of the eggplant so it will not stick to your grill as it cooks. I used to use a pastry brush like this one and later switched to acooking oil spray bottle like this one that lets me fill it with any cooking oil I want. It’s cheaper than buying spray oil and you don't have to worry about the ingredients in the propellant.


3. Grill the eggplant at 400 degrees (F ) for about one hour (I use a digital food thermometer like this kind to double check the temperature of the eggplant matches my grill settings) or until the eggplant is fully cooked all the way through. Remove the eggplant from the grill and allow it to cool.


easy grilled eggplant recipe
Will you just look at those grill marks!

4. Scoop the cooked eggplant from its skin with a spoon and either put it in a food processor, high speed blender, or bowl.


5. Add the tahini, lemon juice, garlic, and parsley (if desired) to the eggplant.


6. Puree, blend, or mix and mash with a potato masher to fully mix the ingredients together and until the baba ganoush is smooth.


7. Serve your baba ghanoush with vegetables, chips, crackers, or pita bread for dipping. Baba ganoush also adds a fun little zip to sandwiches as a condiment or as a sandwich spread!


easy baba ganoush recipe
So good!

If you are looking for more grilling ideas, check out the following options – and more! – below!

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Sheltie Times said…
I love it on rice cakes.