Baklazhanovaya Ikra can be most accurately described as the Russian version of poor man's caviar, or Babaganoush. That's not to say it's the same thing! The thing i love about this dip is that it tastes so fresh and zingy, as opposed to the Russian comfort food we've all come to know. I love this dip tipped with parsley, and spread across a crusty slice of bread; it seems to go really well with a sharp white wine.
It's a great REALLY simple recipe to take to a party, better than buying an overly salted dip from the supermarket.
1 large (and i mean LARGE) eggplant... look for one around 750gm
2 tomatoes, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
2 tbs red vinegar or lemon juice (i prefer lemon juice for the freshness factor)
2 tbs good oil (olive is an easy choice)
2 cloves garlic, minced.
Punch a number of holes into the eggplant with a fork and put into the oven on around 180 degrees for an hour or so, until the eggplant is beginning to collapse into itself, then remove and leave to cool for 10 minutes or so. Split the eggplant down the middle and scoop the contents into a food processor.
Add all of the other ingredients and whizz it up until it forms a fine paste. (Note: some traditional recipes for Balkazhanovaya Ikra call for only the eggplant to be processed or finely chopped; and all other ingredients to be finely chopped... horses for courses people!) Refridgerate overnight and the dip with thicken naturally. Enjoy however you wish!