In Search of Tahini

I thought I was through writing about eggplant, but I’m not. Last time I was dishing about my eggplants I was roasting more than twenty of them to freeze in cubes and make puree. Now the cubes are in the freezer, and I scrounged up more containers for the puree too, but I didn’t want to just freeze all of it. I want to use some of the fresh puree to make baba ghannouge, which I have never made before. But even without looking up a recipe, I already know that I need tahini (sesame seed paste). So I have unfinished business with my eggplant puree, and we definitely did not grow any sesame seeds this summer!

Having now lived in Greenville for a little more than ten years I can say that I have lived here continuously longer than I have lived anywhere else. In my travels I have turned to middle eastern shops, when available, for a nutritious and reasonably priced meal. But in all the time that I have been here I never knew about Pita House, both a middle eastern market and restaurant. There’s a sign on the door that says cash or check only, and that’s the way they have been doing it for thirty two years now, according to the very friendly and polite young man at the register. They had tahini at a reasonable price, and I bought two pounds.

But I was hungry, and waiting for my son, and it smelled good, and the people were so welcoming. I wound up eating a plate of falafel and hummos, with their delicious pita bread. You might also note that I adopted the spellings from their menu for said items. There were all sorts of interesting things to look at in there, a mish-mash of middle eastern cultures and some funky sounding middle eastern music playing, I swear! Also, it was hard to walk away from those delicious looking pastries. So I’ll be going back there to re-up on my tahini and maybe ask about a baba ghannouge recipe. But I know how those long-time family restaurant chef types are about sharing recipes… 🙂

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