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Rich walnuts. Savory, charred eggplant. Sweet-tart pomegranate molasses
Milk Street Bowtie Eggplant-Walnut Dip (Kashke Bademjan)

Eggplant-Walnut Dip (Kashke Bademjan)

1 hour 20 minutes active, plus cooling

Free

Traditional Persian kashke bademjan is a rich, savory dip made from fried eggplant and onions, walnuts and kashke (fermented yogurt that has been cooked and strained). Our simplified but equally flavorful version uses the broiler to cook the vegetables and whole-milk yogurt for creaminess. We also added pomegranate molasses for its sweet-tart notes, a generous dose of fresh herbs and Aleppo pepper for its intriguing hint of heat. (If you cannot find Aleppo pepper, substitute a pinch of cayenne.) The consistency of the dip was best after being refrigerated for at least 12 hours, but its flavor was fullest at room temperature, so allow it to stand on the counter for about 1 hour before stirring in the herbs and adding the garnishes. Serve the dip with warmed pita bread or seeded crackers.

1 large yellow onion, peeled and cut into 8 wedges
7 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided, plus extra to serve
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
2 1-pound eggplants, peeled and cut into 1-inch-thick rounds
3/4 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped, divided
1/2 cup whole-milk yogurt
1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
1 teaspoon Aleppo pepper (optional)
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint, divided
Pomegranate seeds, to garnish
Ingredients
  • 1

    large yellow onion, peeled and cut into 8 wedges

  • 7

    tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided, plus extra to serve

  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper

  • 2

    1-pound eggplants, peeled and cut into 1-inch-thick rounds

  • ¾

    cup walnuts, toasted and chopped, divided

  • ½

    cup whole-milk yogurt

  • 1
  • 1

    teaspoon Aleppo pepper (optional)

  • ¼

    cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

  • ¼

    cup plus 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint, divided

  • Pomegranate seeds, to garnish

Directions
  1. 01
    Heat the broiler to high with a rack 6 inches from the element. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. In a large bowl, toss the onion with 2 tablespoons of the oil and 1 teaspoon salt. Arrange the onion wedges in a single layer on one corner of the prepared baking sheet. Place the eggplant rounds in a single layer on the same baking sheet and brush both sides with the remaining 5 tablespoons olive oil. In a small bowl, combine 2 teaspoons salt and 1 teaspoon black pepper, then use to season both sides of the eggplant.
    See Demo
    09 27 17 Cpk 021
  2. 02
    Broil until the eggplant is well browned, 10 to 15 minutes. Flip each round (but not the onions), then broil until the second sides are well browned, another 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly. Finely chop half of the eggplant and transfer to a medium bowl; set aside. In a food processor, process ½ cup of the walnuts until they turn into a paste that clings to the sides of the bowl, about 15 seconds. Scrape down the bowl and add the yogurt, pomegranate molasses, Aleppo pepper (if using), and ½ teaspoon salt. Process until combined, about 1 minute, scraping the bowl as needed. Add the whole eggplant rounds and the onion and process until smooth, about 15 seconds. Transfer to the bowl with the chopped eggplant and stir. Cover and refrigerate for at least 12 hours or up to 3 days.
    See Demo
    09 27 17 Cpk 203
  3. 03
    About 1 hour before serving, remove the dip from the refrigerator and let come to room temperature. Stir in the parsley and ¼ cup of the mint, then taste and season with salt and black pepper. Transfer to a serving bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons mint, the remaining ¼ cup walnuts and pomegranate seeds.
Tip: Don’t use eggplants that weigh more than 1 pound each;** they tend to have more seeds and can be bitter. Choose eggplants with taut, glossy skin and no bruises or brown spots.
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Eggplant-Walnut Dip (Kashke Bademjan)

Get Ready to Cook

cups

1 hour

20 minutes active, plus cooling

Tip

Don’t use eggplants that weigh more than 1 pound each;** they tend to have more seeds and can be bitter. Choose eggplants with taut, glossy skin and no bruises or brown spots.

Ingredients
  • 1

    large yellow onion, peeled and cut into 8 wedges

  • 7

    tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided, plus extra to serve

  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper

  • 2

    1-pound eggplants, peeled and cut into 1-inch-thick rounds

  • ¾

    cup walnuts, toasted and chopped, divided

  • ½

    cup whole-milk yogurt

  • 1
  • 1

    teaspoon Aleppo pepper (optional)

  • ¼

    cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

  • ¼

    cup plus 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint, divided

  • Pomegranate seeds, to garnish

Step 1 of 3

Season and prepare the eggplant

1
large yellow onion, peeled and cut into 8 wedges
7
tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided, plus extra to serve
3
teaspoons Kosher salt
2
1-pound eggplants, peeled and cut into 1-inch-thick rounds
1
teaspoon black pepper

Heat the broiler to high with a rack 6 inches from the element. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.


In a large bowl, toss the onion with 2 tablespoons of the oil and 1 teaspoon salt. Arrange the onion wedges in a single layer on one corner of the prepared baking sheet.


Place the eggplant rounds in a single layer on the same baking sheet and brush both sides with the remaining 5 tablespoons olive oil.


In a small bowl, combine 2 teaspoons salt and 1 teaspoon black pepper, then use to season both sides of the eggplant.

Step 2 of 3

Broil, process and cover

½
cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
½
cup whole-milk yogurt
1
tablespoon pomegranate molasses
1
teaspoon Aleppo pepper (optional)
½
teaspoon kosher salt

Broil until the eggplant is well browned, 10 to 15 minutes. Flip each round (but not the onions), then broil until the second sides are well browned, another 10 to 15 minutes.


Remove from the oven and let cool slightly. Finely chop half of the eggplant and transfer to a medium bowl; set aside.


In a food processor, process ½ cup of the walnuts until they turn into a paste that clings to the sides of the bowl, about 15 seconds. Scrape down the bowl and add the yogurt, pomegranate molasses, Aleppo pepper (if using), and ½ teaspoon salt.


Process until combined, about 1 minute, scraping the bowl as needed. Add the whole eggplant rounds and the onion and process until smooth, about 15 seconds.


Transfer to the bowl with the chopped eggplant and stir. Cover and refrigerate for at least 12 hours or up to 3 days.

Step 3 of 3

Top and serve

¼
cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
¼
cup plus 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint, divided
Kosher salt and ground black pepper, to taste
Extra-virgin olive oil, to serve
¼
cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
Pomegranate seeds, to garnish

About 1 hour before serving, remove the dip from the refrigerator and let come to room temperature. Stir in the parsley and ¼ cup of the mint, then taste and season with salt and black pepper.


Transfer to a serving bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons mint, the remaining ¼ cup walnuts and pomegranate seeds.

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