Chargrilled cauliflower with tomato, dill and capers
Ottolenghi: The Cookbook
Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi
You know something good is afoot when the authors warn those who do not like lemon and garlic to skip to the end. However this book from the popular Nottinghill deli, bakery, patisserie, cafe is pure genius because these southern Mediterranean/Middle Eastern recipes are totally accessible to the home cook. The huge flavour and vibrant colour of these dishes is derived from readily available ingredients using the simplest of techniques. Perhaps best of all is the story of how a Jewish boy from West Jerusalem and an Arab boy from East Jerusalem found each other, and success, in London. Not to be missed are their wonderful, signature giant meringues! Hardcover, 304 pp, $65.00.
2 tbsp capers, drained and roughly chopped
1 tbsp French wholegrain mustard
2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tbsp cider vinegar
120ml olive oil
1 small cauliflower, divided into florets
1 tbsp chopped dill
50 g baby spinach leaves
20 cherry tomatoes, halved
coarse sea salt and black pepper
1. First make the dressing, either by hand or in a food processor. Mix together the capers, mustard, garlic, vinegar and some salt and pepper. Whisk vigorously or run the machine while adding half the oil in a slow trickle. You should get a thick, creamy dressing. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
2. Add the cauliflower florets to a large pan of boiling salted water and simmer for 3 minutes only. Drain through a colander and run under a cold tap to stop the cooking immediately.Leave in the colander to dry well. Once dry, place in a mixing bowl with the remaining olive oil and some salt and pepper. Toss well.
3. Place a ridged griddle pan over the highest possible heat and leave it for 5 minutes or until very hot. Grill the cauliflower in a few batches - make sure the florets are not cramped. Turn them around as they grill then once nicely charred, transfer to a bowl. While the cauliflower is still hot, add the dressing, dill, spinach and tomatoes. Stir together well, then taste and adjust the seasoning.
4. Serve warm or at room temperature, adjusting the seasoning again at the last minute.
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