Sam Mogannam's mother used to puree all of the eggplant for her baba ghanouj in a food processor until silky-smooth because she didn't think her kids would like the chunkier version she grew up eating. 'But after a trip to visit my grandmother in Bethlehem, she decided to make it this way, and all of us were like, "Mom, don't ever do it another way again!'" he says. Slideshow: More Great Party Dips
Baba ghanouj is best served when freshly made, but it can be refrigerated for up to 5 days.
Rounder varieties of eggplant can be used in place of the slender Japanese type called for here, but instead of broiling, they should be halved lengthwise, oiled and roasted, cut side down, in a 400° oven until the flesh is soft.