Other than Mexican food, mediterranean food is something I could eat every day for the rest of my life. Especially if it’s this mediterranean flatbread with roasted garlic, lots of roasted veggies and hummus.
Growing up in a Kurdish family, I’ve been eating mediterranean food for the past 25 years. I’m pretty sure hummus was one of my main baby food groups (and is now one of my main adult food groups). I’m so glad the rest of the world jumped on the hummus-and-mediterranean-food bandwagon in the past few years, because I’m finally able to share with others my love of the food I grew up eating.
Speaking of our middle eastern roots – Lexi and I have been approached a strangely high number of times since we’ve been traveling about where we’re from.. and by total and complete strangers. For example, when we were in Paris earlier this month, we were just browsing outside of a little shop and a man comes up to us, and the following conversation ensued:
“Hi, where are you from?” – random man
“Uh hi, we’re from Texas.” – us
“No, where are you from?” – random man
“Um.. Dallas? The United States?” – us
“No, no.. Italian? Persian?” – random man
“Ohh.. um, we’re Kurdish” – us
“Ahh, and you’re sisters. Okay thanks” – random man as he waves goodbye
If this wasn’t the first time it happened, we would’ve just stood there stunned for a few seconds, but it’s almost a weekly occurrence. The whole thing is just bizarre, but we’ve learned to just go with it and embrace our Kurdish background more, which for me, partially means eating more mediterranean food.
Although this flatbread is a far cry from the traditional Kurdish dishes our Nana and Baba would cook for us, it uses one of our favorite things from growing up – “Baba bread,” which is just a chewy, thin bread our grandfather would always have for us. It can be found at any Turkish/middle eastern market (if you’re in Houston – PLEASE go to Phoenicia’s for us), or feel free to use pita bread or Naan – really any type flatbread will do!
Similar to the majority of mediterranean food – you don’t have to feel guilty about eating this flatbread! It’s vegan, but feel free to load it up with feta cheese because when isn’t adding cheese to something a good idea? The roasted garlic is one of my favorite things about this, and the balsamic glaze we drizzled on top is a close second. Use any vegetables you want, too – it’s a great cleaning-out-the-veggie-drawer recipe.
- 1 large piece of mediterranean flatbread (naan, pita)
- 1 medium eggplant, diced into 1/4" cubes
- 1 medium zuchhini, diced into 1/4" cubes
- 1 medium onion, sliced into eighths
- 1 carton cherry tomatoes
- 1 large garlic bulb
- 1/2 C hummus (store-bought or homemade)
- 1 C balsamic vinegar
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Salt + pepper
- Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Cut the top of garlic off - so each clove is flat and exposed. Drizzle the top of the garlic bulb with olive oil, and loosely wrap in foil.
- Place all diced vegetables and whole cherry tomatoes on a baking sheet. Give it a generous dousing of olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss to coat all vegetables in the oil and s+p.
- Place the baking sheet with vegetables and the foil with the garlic in the oven. Roast the vegetables for approx. 30 minutes, stirring the pan at least twice throughout the roasting. The garlic may need a little longer to roast - to check, open up the foil and the garlic should be soft and light brown.
- While the veggies and garlic are roasting, make the balsamic glaze - place the balsamic vinegar in a small saucepan, bring to a boil, and let it simmer until it has reduced quite significantly, and thickly coats the back of the spoon. Take it off the heat, and set aside until ready to use.
- Once the garlic is ready and has cooled enough to handle it, squeeze the garlic out of the cloves and spread it on the flatbread - it should spread quite easily. Then, spread the hummus on top of the garlic and drizzle with a little olive oil. Place in the oven and bake for approx. 8 minutes, until the bread is a little crispy and everything has heated through.
- Pull the bread out of the oven, and top with the warm, roasted veggies (if the veggies have cooled too much, just pop back in the oven for a minute or two). Finally, drizzle with the balsamic glaze, and enjoy!