Roasted Eggplant with Roasted Chickpeas and Tahini Sauce

roasted eggplant and chickpeas with tahini sauce - trustinkim

I have seen a number of recipes for roasted chickpeas lately, but I wasn’t very interested in making them because of a bad experience with some chalky store-bought roasted chickpeas. For some reason I decided to give them a try, and was really happy with the result. They come out just the right texture, not too dry, not too soft. I love the bit of saltiness topping off the creamy eggplant and tahini sauce. Add the sweetness of the pomegranate seeds and you’ve got a pretty perfect vegan meal.

This dinner is quite simple to make. Most of the work is done by the oven, roasting the eggplant and the chickpeas, and while it is roasting you just have to whip up a quick sauce.

I made this a few months ago, and I didn’t actually measure the sauce ingredients, so this is my best estimate of the amounts I used. I cobbled this recipe together from ideas I’ve seen in various cookbooks, most notably the Ottolenghi (drool) cookbooks.

What you need:

  • 1 – 540 mL can chickpeas
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • 3 – 4 long and skinny, or 8 small eggplants
For the sauce:
  • 1/3 cup tahini paste
  • 2/3 cup greek yogurt
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 1/4 cup water or more as needed
  • parsley to garnish

Optional:

  • pomegranate seeds, of they are in season. Chopped dried sour cherries might be nice too.

What you do:

  1. Preheat the oven to 220C/425F.
  2. Rinse the chickpeas and pat them dry with a clean towel. Toss them in 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, then toss with salt, pepper and cumin. Spread out into a single layer on a baking tray.
  3. Wash the eggplants and slice them in half lengthwise. Place them cut-side up on a baking tray and brush them with olive oil.
  4. Roast the chickpeas and eggplants for 30-40 minutes, tossing the chickpeas halfway through the time. The eggplant should be very tender when you poke it with a fork. The chickpeas should be slightly crunchy, but not hard. It’s a good idea to test the chickpeas a few times in the last 15 minutes of cooking time.
  5. While the oven is doing its thing you can make the sauce. Whisk together the tahini, yogurt, lemon juice, garlic and salt. Slowly add the water to make a pourable yet still thick sauce. Taste and add more salt or lemon if needed.
  6. Plate the eggplant, drizzling the sauce over them, and then top with the chickpeas. Garnish with chopped parsley and optional pomegranate.

Roasted Butternut and Cauliflower Salad with Tahini Sauce

Roasted Butternut and Cauliflower Salad with Tahini Dressing - trust in kim

This roasted veggie salad is one of my newer favourites. The veggies caramelize and become even more delicious when they are roasted, but this salad is really just an excuse to use this tahini dressing.

You can easily make it into a full meal by adding some quinoa or another grain.  I’ve also made it with some sumac-spiced chicken on the side.

What you need:

  • 1 butternut squash
  • olive oil
  • 1 head cauliflower
  • salt and pepper
  • baby spinach

For the dressing:

  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 1/3 cup of warm water
  • 1/2 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • dash of hot sauce

What you do:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400F and get two baking pans ready.
  2. Cut the squash in half and scoop out the seeds.  Cut the stem off; if you wish you can peel it, but the peel is edible, as it turns softer when it is baked. Cut the squash into slices and toss them with a little olive oil.  Place on a baking sheet, salt and pepper lightly, then put into the oven.  It will need about 30 minutes to cook.
  3. Cut the cauliflower into florets and place on another baking sheet.  Throw it into the oven and set the timer for about 15 minutes.  At that time you can flip them over so the tops have a chance to brown up.  Flip the squash oven now too.
  4. When the vegetables have both browned up nicely they are ready to eat. If one looks done before the other you should pull it out of the oven.
  5. While the vegetables are in the oven you can make the tahini dressing.  Begin by putting the tahini in a bowl and add a little bit of water to mix until the tahini becomes liquid.  Then add more water until it is all combined.  Mix in the rest of the ingredients.
  6. Place the spinach on a large plate, (add your grains now if you are using them) and top it with the squash and cauliflower.  Drizzle with the tahini dressing.
  7. Enjoy!

Roasted Butternut Squash, Cauliflower and Onions with Tahini Sauce

Roasted butternut squash, cauliflower and red onions with tahini sauce, za’atar and pine nuts: otherwise known as my new favourite meal.  And it’s vegan and gluten-free, and it’ll make you feel good on a rainy fall evening – at least it did for me!  And I’m really looking forward to my leftovers for lunch tomorrow.  I got the idea for the recipe from a  Yotam Ottolenghi recipe.  I added the cauliflower because I think it is perfect with tahini sauce, and I changed the cooking method a bit, cooking the squash before cutting it, because it’s easier to cut when it’s soft.  I also used my tahini recipe instead of his.

I served mine on quinoa to make it a filling meal, but it would be great on a bed of greens too.  Feel free to leave out the za’atar and pine nuts if you want, and garnish with some fresh pomegranate or parsley.

What you need:

1 butternut squash

1 head of cauliflower, cut into small florets

2 red onions, cut into large chunks

2 tablespoons olive oil

salt and pepper

For the tahini sauce:

1/4 cup tahini

1/2 clove garlic, minced

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon salt

dash of hot sauce

1/4 cup of warm water, or as needed

For the za’atar: (there are so many ways to make this, so make it up as you go along)

1 tablespoon ground sumac

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon ground sesame seeds

1/4 teaspoon ground anise or fennel seeds

What you do:

1. Preheat the oven to 425F.  To roast the veggies, first cut the squash in half and scoop out the seeds.  Place the two pieces face down on a baking sheet and roast for about half an hour or until you can pierce it easily with a knife.

2. Put the onions and cauliflower pieces on another baking sheet, and toss them with the olive oil and some salt and pepper.  Put them in the oven with the squash for about 25 minutes.  About half way through the roasting, give them a stir.  The cauliflower should be a little browned when it is done.

3. Combine the tahini, garlic, lemon juice, salt and hot sauce.  Add the warm water gradually, adding enough until the sauce is a consistency you like.  I like mine pretty liquidy, so I can drizzle it.  You can also adjust the lemon and hot sauce to your liking.  I usually add a little more lemon.

4. To make the za’atar just combine all the spices.  If you have them whole and want to grind them, it’s going to be even tastier.

5.  To serve, cut the squash into chunks and serve it on a bed of quinoa or greens, then top with some onion and cauliflower.  Drizzle with the tahini, pretty liberally, then sprinkle on some pine nuts and za’atar.

Enjoy!

 

 

Cauliflower and Tahini Sauce

Yum!   This is so easy – just bake some cauliflower and drizzle a little sauce on top.  So easy, so delicious, so good for you.  What more can you ask for?  There was some leftover sauce, so I used it as a dip for raw broccoli – I think it’s quite a versatile sauce that could be used for a dip or topping for most raw or roasted veggies, and maybe even meats.  Please leave me a comment if you try the sauce out for other uses.

I love roasted cauliflower, and I often roast it without any oil.  Feel free to toss it in a little olive oil if you wish, but it’s amazing without as well.  I’ve roasted cauliflower many times before, but I like this new addition of the sauce from Bonnie Stern’s Friday Night Dinners.  I’ve served it as an appetizer and as a side dish.

What you need:

1 head of cauliflower, broken into florets

a little olive oil (optional)

For the sauce:

1/4 cup tahini

1/2 clove garlic, minced

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon salt

dash of hot sauce

1/4 cup of warm water, or as needed

What you do:

1. Preheat the oven to 400F, then throw the cauliflower florets onto a large baking sheet. (toss them in a little olive oil beforehand, if you wish)

2.  Bake for 25-35 minutes, or until browned and soft inside.

3.  Combine the tahini, garlic, lemon juice, salt and hot sauce.  Add the warm water gradually until the sauce is a consistency you like.

Serve the cauliflower with the sauce drizzled on top, or the sauce on the side for dipping.

Spinach Borek with Apple Tahini Sauce

Spinach Borek is a great little vegan savoury appetizer than you can make up ahead of time, then pop in the oven as guests are arriving.  I made up the filling the day before and filled it right before putting it in the oven, but you could also fill and fold them up ahead of time.  Just put them in the fridge with a slightly damp towel over top.  I found this recipe in Molly Katzen’s ‘Enchanted Broccoli Forest’ years ago and have only slightly modified it.

What you need for the Spinach Borek:

2 packages frozen spinach

1/4 cup olive oil

1 large onion, chopped finely (about 1&1/2 cups)

1/2 teaspoon salt

pepper

3 cloves garlic

1 cup chopped walnuts, toasted

1/3 cup fine bread crumbs

1/4 cup chopped fresh mint

1/4 cup chopped fresh dill

3 tablespoons lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon grated orange rind

1/2 cup currants

a little grated nutmeg

1 pound filo pastry

What you need for the Apple Tahini Sauce:

1/2 cup tahini

1/4 cup apple juice, or more as needed

1 & 1/2 tablespoons cider vinegar

1 clove garlic, minced

pinch of salt

1/4 teaspoon cumin

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

pinch of cayenne

How to make the spinach borek:

1. Thaw filo and spinach.  Filo needs a few hours to thaw; read the instructions on the label.  If you have it in the fridge, take it out at least one hour before you plan to use it.

2.  Heat about 1 tablespoon of the oil and fry the onion over medium heat for about 8-10 minutes.  Squeeze the excess moisture out of the spinach and add it to the onions, cooking for a few minutes.

3.  Remove from heat and add all the remaining ingredients and mix them in well.

4.  Lay out the filo and brush a little olive oil over the sheet.  Follow the diagram below to fold them up, then brush on  a little more olive oil before they go in the oven.

5.  Bake at 375F for 30 minutes.  These are great hot, and can also be served at room temperature.

How to make the tahini sauce:

1.  Use electric mixer to beat tahini for about 5 minutes.

2. Gradually add apple juice and cider vinegar.  Add more apple juice if it’s too thick.

Note:  if you don’t add it gradually it will become a blobby mess and the oil may separate, like it did for me.  I spent ages trying to bring it back to the consistency it should be.

3.  Add remaining ingredients and taste to see if you want to adjust the seasonings.

4.  You can keep this in the fridge for a few weeks, but keep in mind that it thickens up when it’s cold.  You may want to take it out of the fridge a while before serving so it has time to soften up.

This sauce is also great for a veggie dip, or a spread for crackers or bread.