.title-desc-wrapper .dt-published.published.post-date { display: none; }

tahini

Roasted Beets with Preserved Lemon & Tahini-Yogurt

TIME: 40 - 60 MINUTES, SERVES: 4
Adapted from Simple by Yotam Ottolenghi

Beets are a crop we try to have available to our customers each week. They are sweet, earthy and powerful, and the tops are some of my favorite cooking greens as well. They are delicious paired with tangy, rich, and slightly bitter flavors (think goat cheese, radicchio, lemon…) There are many ways to prepare beets—my absolute favorite is roasting. For this reason, we like harvesting the medium-sized roots—those which can be quartered and transformed into beautiful, caramelized wedges with just a blast of high heat, a little oil and salt. I roast multiple pans at a time and keep them in the fridge to marinate and eat over salads throughout the week. Feel free to double this recipe—it’s even better served cold the next day.

INGREDIENTS


2+ lbs. beets, washed, trimmed and quartered. For larger beets, chop into similar-sized chunks
2 tbls. olive oil
2 tsp. cumin seed
1/2 preserved lemon, skin and flesh finely chopped
2+ tbls. lemon juice
1 tbls. tahini
1/2 c. Greek yogurt
High quality olive oil, for garnish
1/2 c. walnuts (opt.)
1/2 c. dill or parsley (opt.)
Sumac, for garnish (opt.)
Salt & fresh ground black pepper, to taste

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F

  2. Toss beets with oil, salt and pepper. Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet and roast for 30 - 40 minutes, depending on size, until tender.

  3. Toast cumin seeds in a small, heavy bottom skillet, stirring to avoid burning.

  4. When the beets are slightly cooled, toss them with the cumin seeds, preserved lemon, 1 tbls. of lemon juice, 1/4 c. of herbs (if using) and optional walnuts. Then transfer to a serving platter.

  5. Mix tahini into the yogurt with the remaining 1 tbls. lemon juice and salt, to taste. Dot this over the beets in 4 - 5 places and stir slightly (fully mixing together will create a pink, potato salad-esque mess).

  6. Sprinkle with remaining herbs and optional sumac, and drizzle with olive oil.

fullsizeoutput_ec1.jpeg
IMG_2569.jpg

Cauliflower Steaks & Purée with Pistachio-Caper Relish

TIME: 45; MINUTES SERVES: 2 - 4
Adapted from Ottolenghi & Bon Appetit

This dish is surprisingly simple, and incredibly impressive as a vegetarian entrée or side dish—a wonderful option if you are wanting to whip up a fancy, plant-based dinner. The caramelized cauliflower steaks are beautiful plated over the purée, and the relish is the perfect mix of salt, fat, acid & crunch.

Yotam Ottolenghi knows how to transform the humble cauliflower into a centerpiece. His original recipe calls for anchovies and egg yolk in the purée, and walnuts in place of pistachios. As always, feel free to adjust to your liking.

INGREDIENTS

Relish
1/3 cup raw pistachios, shelled
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tbls. capers, drained
1/2 t. crushed red pepper flakes or 1/2 hot pepper, seeded and minced
3 tbls. parsley, chopped
1 tbls. sherry vinegar
1 tsp. lemon zest
1/2 small shallot, minced
1 small clove garlic, grated
Kosher salt & fresh ground black pepper, to taste

1 medium head cauliflower
1 clove garlic, grated
1 - 2 tbls. lemon juice
2 tbls. olive oil or butter/ghee, plus 1 tbls. for frying
2+ tbls. water or cream
1 salt-packed anchovy filet, rinsed & cleaned (opt.)
3 - 4 strips lemon zest
1/2 tsp. each za’atar and nigella seeds (opt.)

METHOD

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

  2. Spread pistachios on a baking sheet and toast until fragrant & golden brown, 5 - 7 minutes. Let cool, then coarsely chop & set aside. Increase oven temperature to 425°F.

  3. Heat olive oil and capers in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until capers are golden and crisp, about 5 minutes. Pour oil and capers into a small bowl to cool.

  4. When the caper-oil mixture is slightly cooled, mix in pistachios, chili (flakes or fresh), parsley, vinegar, shallot, garlic, and lemon zest. Season with salt and black pepper. Set relish aside. *This can be made a few hours, or up to a day in advance.

  5. For the cauliflower: Remove the tough outer leaves from cauliflower, leaving any tender inner leaves. Trim stem to create a flat base (careful not to over-trim—you’ll need a base to hold the steaks together), and rinse if dirty. Cut cauliflower in half from top to bottom, creating two lobes. From the cut-edge of each lobe, slice a 1-inch “steak” (the stem should hold the florets together), resulting in 2 similar-sized steaks. Very coarsely chop remaining florets & leaves.

  6. Boil enough salted water to cover the florets in a large saucepan, and cook until very tender, about 8 minutes. Drain and purée in a food processor with garlic, lemon juice, 2 tbls. olive oil or butter/ghee, water or cream (to thin), and optional anchovy until very smooth. You may need to scrape down the sides a couple times. Season with salt and more lemon if necessary, and set aside.

  7. Heat 1 tbls. butter/ghee in a large, cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add cauliflower steaks and lemon zest (tucking the strips into the lobes to avoid burning). Cook until steaks are deep golden brown. Flip over and season with salt.

  8. Transfer skillet to the oven and roast until cauliflower stems are fork-tender, about 15 minutes. After 10 minutes, remove cauliflower and sprinkle with optional nigella seed & za’atar. If the steaks are not softened at this point, add a couple tbls. water and return pan to oven for another 5 - 7 minutes.

  9. To serve, spoon cauliflower purée onto a platter and arrange steaks on top. Spoon relish over and sprinkle with salt and a drizzle of olive oil. Serve with extra lemon wedges.

Chocolate-Sesame Banana Bread

TIME: 1.5 HOURS; SERVES: 1, 9 X 5 INCH LOAF PAN
Adapted from Camille Becerra’s recipe in ‘Cherry Bombe’

This gluten-free banana "bread" and I have a love-hate relationship: I adored it so much that I started eating a fat slice slathered in crème fraîche every morning for breakfast. I soon realized I was justifying eating cake for breakfast, and sadly ended our love affair. But I’ll whip up a loaf every now and then when I’m feeling fancy.

The original recipe is not gluten-free, and is made with ginger & coconut instead of chocolate & tahini. Feel free to adjust the ingredients to make your dream banana cake bread.

I wouldn't categorize this under "seasonal recipes", except for the fact that our local grocery outlet gets weekly shipments of over-ripe bananas and I feel obligated to divert some of them from the waste stream.

INGREDIENTS

1/2 cup tahini
1/3 cup sesame seeds
4 bananas: 3 mashed, 1 cut in half lengthwise
1/2 cup cane sugar, rapadura or coconut sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 cup plain, whole-fat yogurt
1 cup gluten-free flour (I use Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Baking)
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 cup cacao nibs (opt.)

METHOD

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.

  2. Grease a 9 × 5-inch loaf pan with butter or oil and coat with the sesame seeds. I do this by pouring the seeds in and swirling them around as I would flour a cake pan.

  3. Mix the 3 mashed bananas, tahini, sugar, eggs, and yogurt together in a large bowl.

  4. In another bowl, combine the gluten-free flour, salt, baking soda, cocoa powder, and optional cacao nibs. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and stir to incorporate.

  5. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and garnish with the remaining halved banana on top, like an off-set yin yang.

  6. Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F and bake for 50 - 60 minutes more, or until a knife inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.

  7. Let cool in the pan for 15 minutes before slicing. The loaf will keep at room temperature, wrapped in beeswax wrap for up to 3 days.

flax bread pan.jpg