While my cupboards continue to expand as I experiment with different ingredients, I also have picked up new kitchen gadgets along the way as well. Some a bit more isoteric (takoyaki pan, my $2 tagine from Morocco), but others have become integrated into my daily routine (food processor, citrus squeezer, garlic press, immersion blender, kitchen scale, etc). One of the more recent additions to my kitchen has been a coffee grinder that doubles as a spice grinder. In fact, it only grinds spices because I don’t drink coffee. ;)
Freshly ground spices are key for fresh tasting food. I don’t buy ground nutmeg anymore, and routinely grind my own allspice, cardamom and cumin. I have a mortar and pestle, which served its purpose. For most things, it works quite well. My nemesis were coriander seeds, though, which I learned while making dukkah, a sweet-savoury Egyptian spice blend. Oh my! I never knew such small things could give you such a work-out. This is what prompted me to seek out an alternative for my forearms. The spice grinder has lived up to its potential, and I happily make room for it in my cupboards.
So why I am bringing up dukkah?
Well, as I try to eat my way through my fridge and pantries before I move, I discovered a small container harbouring some leftover dukkah in my fridge (right next to my rediscovered miso, no less!). A sniff taste told me this was still fresh! Slightly unconventional, but incredibly delicious, this Egyptian spice mix is spiced with cumin, with a citrus overtone from coriander, with sweetness imparted from almonds and coconut. Earlier, I found it scrumptious with a poached egg and toast, but I was eager to try it with roasted vegetables.
Inspired by Jaden at Steamy Kitchen, I opted to roast cauliflower along with chickpeas until they were both sweet, nutty and brown. Sprinkled with dukkah, with its earthy sweetness, this paired incredibly well. Gosh, I just love rediscovering old favourites. :)
How do you like to use dukkah?
PS. Wondering why my cauliflower looks a bit purple? Let’s just say I roasted the cauliflower along with some beets. The beets leaked. On the cauliflower. But truly, I see no problem with purple-tinged cauliflower! :)
Roasted Cauliflower and Chickpeas with Dukkah
2 lb cauliflower, cut into bite size pieces (1 large head)
2 cups cooked chickpeas (or a 19-oz can of chickpeas, rinsed well and drained)
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2-1 tsp sea salt, or to taste
4 tbsp dukkah, or the following:
1.5 tbsp blanched almonds, toasted and finely chopped
2 tsp coriander seeds, toasted and ground
1/2 tbsp cumin seeds, toasted and ground
1/2 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted and ground
1 tbsp unsweetened dried shredded coconut, toasted and ground
pinch freshly ground black pepper
1. Preheat oven to 400F.
2. If making your dukkah, now, separately toast the almonds, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, sesame seeds and coconut. Grind each individually, then combine all together with a pinch of salt and pepper. Set aside.
3. Combine cauliflower florets (include all the little bits!) and chickpeas. Toss with olive oil and salt, to taste. Lay in a single layer on two baking trays lined with a silpat.
4. Roast for 20-40 minutes until top edges are golden brown. Check at 20 minutes, if it isn’t done, toss to have them evenly roast. Once out of the oven, top with dukkah. Serve immediately.