Raw Beetroot and Herb Salad

How great is the earthy taste of beetroot! Growing my own, the earthiness and its inherent sweetness are both intensified in these fresh-from-the-ground crimson balls.

This crunchy salad is a good way to start or end a meal, or to serve as part of a spread of vegetable-based dishes. It is an Ottolenghi recipe, simple in its design and gorgeous in its delivery. It is very crunchy with the beetroot raw and the toasted nuts and seeds. If you like it a little softer, quickly saute the julienned beetroot, like we do in the Beetroot and Carrot Salad.

Everything can be prepared in advance, kept in the fridge, and combined when you’re ready.

We have some similar Beetroot recipes. Try Roasted Beetroot and Garlic Salad with Walnuts, Beetroot with Yoghurt Tahini Dressing, and Beetroot, Orange and Black Olive Salad.

You can browse all of our Beetroot recipes here. Or have a look through our Ottolenghi recipe collection. We love Salads and have so many. Browse them here, or explore our easy Mid Summer recipe collection.

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Three Citrus Salad with Green Chilli, Ginger and Crunchy Almond Salsa

It’s late Autumn, and it is such a beautiful season. Included in the abundant bounty available before we head into Winter is the first of the citrus. As soon as they are available, we look for Pomelo and Ruby Grapefruit for some tangy salads before the blanket of Winter douses all thoughts of salads and other cold foods.

Nopi, a different style of book from Ottolenghi, one based on recipes from his restaurant, has a Citrus Salad perfectly suited for this season. It pairs the citrus with bitter greens and a salsa made from some oven-toasted almonds whizzed with spices and seeds into a salsa. Perfect! He calls it a punchy, crunchy salsa.

This would make a perfect pre-cursor to a main meal, or as a side salad to other dishes – try it with dishes that incorporate grilled items, simple tofu dishes, or a soft and gentle grain or lentil dish.

Are you looking for other Pomelo recipes? Try  Pomelo with Avocado Salad, and Pomelo Salad with Asian Flavours.

Orange Salads include Orange and Walnut Salad, and Beetroot, Orange and Black Olive Salad.

Or would you like other Belgian Endive (Witlof) dishes? Try Belgian Endive Cooked in its Own Juice and Butter, Grilled Witlof Salad with Dill and Shallots, and Caramelised Belgian Endive with a Cheesy Topping.

Browse all of our Pomelo recipes, all Orange recipes, all Belgian Endive dishes, and all of Ottolenghi dishes that we have tried. All of our many many Salads are here. Or enjoy our collection of easy Late Autumn dishes.

Continue reading “Three Citrus Salad with Green Chilli, Ginger and Crunchy Almond Salsa”

Roasted Sweet Potato and Fresh Figs

The fig season seems so brief in Adelaide, but that might be because they are so hard to find in green groceries. It seems that as soon as they appear in the shops, the season is over.

This year I did manage to find some of the green variety of figs that ripen earlier, and then some outrageously expensive black figs. Really, I need to make friends with someone with a fig tree.

One of Ottolenghi’s dishes in Jerusalem takes advantage of the beautiful taste and texture of figs to pair them with sweet potatoes, chillies and spring onions. This is so good. I mean SO GOOD. You do need to have figs that are sweet, moist and very ripe. You can smell the sweetness.

By the way, if you have access to figs, don’t forget to dry a few dozen, for use over winter.

Are you looking for Fig recipes? Try Baked Figs with Thyme, Figs with Rosewater and Almonds, Fig Salad with Hazelnuts and Mesclun, and Fig and Pecorino Salad.

Or perhaps you are looking for Sweet Potato dishes. Read about Sweet Potatoes here. And then try Caramelised Sweet Potatoes, Potato and Sweet Potato Spicy Curry, Sweet Potato Wedges with Creme Fraiche Dressing.

Or take some time and browse all of the Fig dishes and the Sweet Potato dishes. We have a few Israeli dishes. Take a look at the Ottolenghi dishes we have tried. Or take some time and browse our Mid Autumn recipes.

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Warm Salad of Charred Okra with Tomato, Garlic and Preserved Lemon

I love this recipe – it is so versatile, and the sort of recipe you can pre-prepare the ingredients, charring the okra and tossing it with the other ingredients at the last moment. The preserved lemon and fresh lemon juice contrast so wonderfully with the charred but still crunchy okra. This dish is GOOD.

The okra can also be charred on the BBQ (grill), tossing them on the hot plate as you sip wine and talk to friends. Then throw them into a pan and toss them with the other ingredients and place on the table for your guests to munch on (try with some flat bread) while you get on with BBQing the rest of the meal. I use a kadhai (Indian wok, flatter than a Chinese one) to make this dish, it is perfect for it.

It is an Ottolenghi recipe, of course, born of the Israeli and Palestinian roots of Sammy and Yotham. Okra features well in these cuisines, from the sun dried okra hanging from strings, to being served in dishes heavy with tamarind syrup. What a divine thought!

For this dish, use short, young, fresh, crisp okra only.

Are you looking for other Okra dishes? Read more about Okra here. And try Crispy Okra (Kurkuri Bhindi), Stir Fried Okra with Sesame Seed, Goan Fried Okra, and Lemak-Style Vegetables.

Perhaps you are looking for Salads? Try Tomato Salad with Green Olives, Chickpea and Carrot Salad with Curry Dressing, and Cucumber and Avocado Salad.

Perhaps try some other Middle Eastern dishes: Babaganoush, Falafel, Parsley and Barley Salad with Spiced Marinated Feta and Chickpea “Tabbouleh”.

We have a wealth of Ottolenghi recipes that we have tried. Or have a look at all of our Okra recipes and all of our Salad recipes. Our Middle Eastern Dishes are here. Or spend some time browsing our Mid Autumn dishes.

Continue reading “Warm Salad of Charred Okra with Tomato, Garlic and Preserved Lemon”

Rice and Orzo

Orzo is petty good, don’t you agree? This little rice-shaped pasta has an elegance that eludes other pastas. I was delighted to find another way to cook this star in Jerusalem, the cookbook by Ottolenghi and Tamimi.

Rice is a staple of many of the communities of the Middle East and features in quite complex dishes as well as very simple ones. Quite often, other ingredients like chickpeas, vermicelli, potatoes, lentils and nuts are are cooked with the rice.

Spices are also used, for example the Bucharan Jews in Jerusalem use ginger, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon with mint, raisins and peas. How delicious!

In this recipe, the usual vermicelli is replaced by Ottolenghi and Tamimi by orzo. Don’t confuse this orzo with the Greek barley – it is the Italian pasta version. You can use vermicelli if you like, just don’t fry them as long as they will burn.

Are you looking for other Orzo recipes? Try Elegant Orzo Salad.

Perhaps you are looking for mixed rice dishes. Try Zucchini Rice, Mango Rice, and Pepper Rice.

We have several Middle Eastern Recipes to try. Beetroot with Yoghurt-Tahini, Saffron and Rosewater Scented Aubergine, and Beautiful Hummus.

Are you looking for more? Explore our Ottolenghi recipes, all of our Orzo dishes, our Rice recipes, and all of our Middle Eastern dishes. Or simply spend some time browsing our Mid Autumn collection of dishes.

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Parsley and Barley Salad with Spiced Marinated Feta

A beautiful, fresh and light Salad

Oh how delightful this salad is! It feels healthy and green and very clarifying. It makes you feel so good as you are eating it. The recipe comes from Ottolenhi and Tamimi’s book Jerusalem.

Middle Eastern and Israeli dishes can be substantial and heavy and are accompanied by a sharp, fresh salad such as this one. The herbs and lemon juice cleanse the palate and give a certain sense of lightness. Serve it with other vegetable-based mezze dishes. I like to eat it on its own for lunch with some flatbread. This amount serves 4 – 5 as a side dish and 2 – 3 as a lunch with flatbread.

The flavours of garlic, olive oil, onion, lemon – flavour so familiar from the Middle East – are all there, accentuated by za’atar – and the flavours are carried by the beautiful green tastes of parsley and green capsicum. A delightful, balanced dish.

Are you looking for similar Barley recipes? Try this wonderful Mediterranean Barley Salad with Crispy Tofu, or  Farmhouse Barley and Vegetable Soup, Barley and Red Kidney Beans, and Adzuki Bean, Barley and Pumpkin Soup with Miso and Parsley.

Or try some Ottolenghi recipes – Roasted Eggplant with a Garlic Sauce, Du Puy Lentils with Tahini and Cumin, and Smashed Garlic and Cucumber Salad.

We even have Parsley recipes for you. Chickpea “Tabbouleh”, Greek style Salsa Verde and Parsley Braised with Tomatoes.

You might like to browse other Parsley recipes here and here, other Barley recipes and other Ottolenghi recipes. Try our Middle Eastern recipes here and here, or explore our collection of easy Spring dishes here and here.

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Roasted Aubergine with a Garlic Sauce, Pine Nuts, Basil and Yoghurt

I have the Ottolenghi book Nopi, and have been determined to make something out of it if just to prove that a cookbook from a restaurant is not necessarily out of reach of someone who loves simple home cooking. While the recipes are a notch up from Ottolenghi’s other books, I enjoyed making this dish.

This really is a stunning dish. I mean, really very very good.

NOTE that this baked eggplant is so delicious, and could be used in a variety of ways. Bake the eggplant and top salads, use with pasta, remove the flesh and mix with yoghurt. Even in this recipe it won’t hold its shape once you begin to handle them, but don’t worry if they are a little mushier than expected. All the better to mop up with flatbreads.

If you would like other Eggplant recipes, try Cheese and Eggplant Torte, Marinated Eggplant, Eggplant Steaks, and Steamed Eggplant with Spring Onions and Sesame.

Ottolenghi recipes include Creamy Baked Sweet Potato, Creamy Caramelised Belgium Endive, and Sticky Balsamic Sweet Potatoes.

Or you might like to explore all Eggplant Recipes, and all of Ottolenghi recipes are here. Are you wanting Yoghurt recipes? Try here. Or simply browse all of our Late Summer recipes here.

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Creamy Baked Sweet Potato and Gratineed Sweet Potato

Ottolenghi has a beautiful Sweet Potato Gratin in his book Ottolenghi. The dish is beautiful, the sweet potato soft, so tender. The success of the dish is the arrangement of a lot of sweet potatoes, overlapping, in a baking dish. What Ottolenghi doesn’t say in the recipe is that it works for just 1 sweet potato as well. Using a small amount of sweet potato means that it is not gratineed, but it is beautiful, tender with a crispy crust.

This is a great dish for Thanksgiving, if you celebrate that US festival. Other Thanksgiving recipes are here.

Are you looking for Sweet Potato dishes? Read about Sweet Potatoes here. And then try Roasted Sweet Potato and Fresh Figs, Caramelised Sweet Potatoes, Potato and Sweet Potato Spicy Curry, and Sweet Potato Wedges with Creme Fraiche Dressing.

What about trying more Gratin dishes? Try Potato and Cheddar Gratin, Gratin of Potatoes and Zucchini with Thyme, and Pomodori Gratinati – Tomatoes Gratineed with Cheese.

For all Sweet Potato recipes click here. Browse all of our Ottolenghi recipes, and all Baked recipes. Or find inspiration in our Late Autumn recipes.

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Vegetarian Muqluba

A deeply flavoured Israeli dish from Ottolenghi and Tamimi. A reasonable amount of effort but worth it.

Maqluba is an amazing dish, deep in flavours and textures. Ottolenghi and Tamimi’s book Jerusalem has a great recipe in it that is easily vegetarian-ised. It was a great success flavour-wise. It was less successful in presentation. The dish should turn out like an upside down cake but my aged super-long grained basmati is a rice that “lifts and separates” rather than clings together to build a superstructure to support an upside-down cake look. Next time I will find a rice with a little more glugginess to build the required infrastructure.

Most recipes for Muqluba do specify basmati rice, but I suspect that the aged basmati isn’t suitable. Perhaps for the vegetarian-ised version a shorter grained rice is more suitable.

Feel free to browse recipes from our Ottolenghi collection. You might also like our Eggplant recipes here and here. Or you might like to browse cauliflower recipes here and here. Check out our easy Winter recipes here and here. Continue reading “Vegetarian Muqluba”

Mung Bean and Baked Carrot Salad

Mung Beans shine in this beautiful salad.

There is a thing about your own cooking that embodies your preferences, and they were built from childhood food experiences, your culture, your climate and  your food journey through life.  So, like it or not, cooking is not formulaic. You twist and turn while following a recipe. You massage it here and there. You add and subtract. You compensate and accentuate. And you cook something that is pleasing to you and to those you love.

So it is with Ottolenghi. I love his recipes, but there are some things that don’t suit my preferences – or my climate. Although he does really well internationalising his dishes, unlike Nigel Slater who unashamedly cooks for an English audience, some things jar with me. For example, his over use of feta when it is not needed to enhance the dish is perhaps a fashion thing. Or maybe to enhance the visuals. Or perhaps the feta is betta in London. Or maybe it is just my preference to use only small amounts. Continue reading “Mung Bean and Baked Carrot Salad”

Caramelised Belgian Endive (Witlof) with a Creamy Cheesy Topping

A comforting dish as the weather turns cooler

The bitter tang of Belgium Endive is a wonderful contrast to our normal fare. Today, it is partially cooked on a pan and then finished in the oven with a creamy cheesy breadcrumb topping.

This is an ideal dish to prepare ahead. Get it ready to pop into the oven, then it is a quick dish for lunches or a quick dinner side dish.

You might also like to try Mediterranean Buckwheat Salad. Browse our Autumn dishes here and here.

Continue reading “Caramelised Belgian Endive (Witlof) with a Creamy Cheesy Topping”

Pomelo and Green Mango Salad with Asian Flavours

This salad has such a fresh taste, embodying the joys of summer.

Ottolenghi has done it again. This is the first time that we’ve used Pomelo and it is a delightful find. Let me say, however, that it is a lot of work to peel and remove the membrane, but once the trick is discovered it is not a difficult task.

This salad has such a fresh taste, embodying the joys of summer. I wonder why pomelo is not very popular in Australia as this dish is very much a beach-side picnic dish or a country-drive-and-picnic dish.

Are you looking for Pomelo recipes? Try Three Citrus Salad with Green Chilli, Ginger and Almond SalsaPomelo Salad with Avocado, Pomelo, Green Mango and Pea Eggplant Salad with Tamarind Dressing.

Ore perhaps other Green Mango recipes? Try Green Mango and Lemon Rice, and Jicama and Green Mango Salad.

Are you looking for other Salads? Try Buddha’s Delight Salad, Kylie’s Tofu and Asian Herb Salad, and Ottolenghi’s Beetroot, Black Olive and Orange Salad.

Or browse all of our Pomelo dishes, all of our Salad Recipes and our Ottolenghi recipes. Or be inspired by our Late Summer recipes.

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Crushed Du Puy Lentils with Tahini and Cumin

This sustaining meal-on-a-plate is a little bit like hummus, though much easier and quicker to prepare. Eat with warm flatbread and a salad.

It is a very very cool summer’s day, full of storms and we are all reaching for our unused jackets to keep warm. We look for something more substantial and comforting today from the kitchen.

I love the lentils of India and the Middle East, and I love the lentils of the West (although a much more limited range). Commonly, lentils soften much more quickly than most dried beans and peas, and take only 20 – 40 minutes to cook. While red lentils (masoor dal), fall apart in the cooking (so making them perfect for soups), brown and green varieties hold their shape, making them a very good base on which to layer other foods. A pan of cooked lentils – braised with carrots, onions, celery, hard herbs and vegetable stock – is a useful thing to have in the fridge, ready to for the basis for turning yesterday’s leftover dishes into a whole new meal.

You might also like to try Indian Du Puy Lentil Sundal Salad, or Du Puy Lentil Soup. Browse through our Du Puy recipes here and here, and you might like to explore all of our Ottolenghi recipes. Be inspired by our Summer recipes here and here.

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Steamed Eggplant with Sesame and Spring Onion

A Japanese Style luxurious aubergine dish – salad, side dish, main course or condiment.

Ottolenghi has a great steamed eggplant recipe in Plenty More, rather like the Thai one that I posted here but just different enough to try it out.

Don’t you just love the silky texture of steamed eggplant – so different to its grilled counterpart?

Steaming maintains some of the aubergine flesh’s texture, which doesn’t happen if you cook it in any other way. It gives this dish a particular substantial quality, making it suitable to serve with just plain rice or fried tofu. It can also be used as a condiment or side dish.

Are you looking for Spring Onion dishes? Try South Indian Spring Onion Soup.

You might also like to try some Eggplant Dishes. Try Saffron and Rosewater Scented Eggplant, Eggplants, Sultanas and Pinenuts, and Steamed Thai Eggplants and Zucchini.

Browse all of our Eggplant recipes, our Japanese dishes, and all of the Ottolenghi recipes we have tried. Or gain inspiration from our Late Summer recipes.

Continue reading “Steamed Eggplant with Sesame and Spring Onion”

Tomato and Pomegranate Salad

From Plenty More, Ottolenghi comes up with a cracker tomato salad with hints of the Middle East.

Who can go past a tomato salad in late summer or autumn when the tomatoes are the sweetest and juiciest? And to celebrate the arrival of Autumn and it’s change in colours, Ottolenghi has this cheery bright red salad that combines the sweetness of the tomatoes with the sour-sweetness of the pomegranates.

The salad is best made in Autumn when the pomegranates come into season.

Are you after Pomegranate recipes? Why not make your own Pomegranate Molasses and Pomegranate Honey. Or try Green Olive, Walnut, Pistachio and Pomegranate Salad, Semi Dried Tomatoes with Pomegranate Molasses, and Crab Apple and Pomegranate Jelly.

You might want to try these Salads as well: Bok Choy with Capers and Tomatoes, the Best Tomato Salad Recipe, Simple Salads from Elizabeth David, and Tomato Paella. We adore a simple tomato salad, and my mother’s German tomato and cucumber salad with cream.

All of our Tomato Salads are here and all of our Pomegranate dishes here. Or browse all of our Salads. Alternatively, browse all of our Mid Autumn dishes.

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