Smokey Eggplant Mousse

One of the truly most decadent dishes I have ever tasted in Israel is the many versions of eggplant mousse. A longtime fan of baba ganoush, I was skeptical a few years ago when I tried my first version of this classic Middle Eastern staple in a mousse form. I am not the biggest fan of French technique cooking; I find the raw grittiness of food in a more pure form typically attracts me greater than dishes that are over concocted. But even so, I am willing to try anything (except liver), and so I did. To my amazement, I fell in love with eggplant made into a mousse. There is something so luxurious about the texture and taste. There are several different version of the dish of course and I typically and happy with most, some more lemony, others more cuminy, while my favorites tend to be smoky and herbaceous tasting with lots of sumac and paparika. I guess the point to all of this is don’t underestimate the mousse and certainlyy let’s keep eating baba ganoush, but don’t overlook a smokey eggplant mousse if you come across one and this recipe is my best recollection of the best I have had, combined with hot grilled flat bread you can sit in complete luxury even all alone, and indulge in this one of a kind dish.

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Spinach and Fresh Herb Risotto

Serves 6
INGREDIENTS
2 cups water
1 cup vegetable broth
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1½ cups baby spinach
½ cup fresh basil leaves, chopped
½ cup fresh Italian parsley, chopped
¼ cup fresh chives, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh marjoran, chopped
1½ cup Arborio rice
1 cup white wine
1 tablespoon butter
¼ cup Asiago cheese
Salt and pepper, to taste
PREPARATION
In a medium [...]

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