Tag Archives: Recipe

Cauliflower and chickpea ‘shish taouk’…so much fabulous flavour…


I’ve had this recipe ready to share for the past week, but I was so happy with it, I kept it to myself all week, almost to protect it in case none of you liked it!!! I do hope you like the look of it and maybe give it a go, the flavours and textures are so good, this is definitely food straight from my heart, food that feeds my soul, and makes me smile :))

I regularly make ‘shish taouk‘, Lebanese marinated chicken kebabs, for my menfolk and friends and family; I love the smell of the marinade, even more so as it cooks, and everyone I’ve ever made it for has loved it, but I’ve never had the chance to enjoy it too.

I’ve tried out marinating aubergines and mushrooms with the same mix but without major success, so having realised what great carriers of flavours the cauliflower and chickpeas have been recently, it struck me that I should try them out with the shish taouk marinade…and, oh yes, it works! It works REALLY well!!!!

This makes a wonderful main dish for us vegetarians, or could be used as a side dish; I ate it hot on the day it was cooked and cold the next, and then even more magic occurred when utilised the leftover chickpeas…read on for the details…

Here goes..

For the marinade:
1 head of garlic, cloves peeled and left whole
3/4 cup olive oil
Juice of 3-5 lemons
1 heaped tablespoon paprika
1/2 tube/100g of tomato purée
2 heaped tablespoons sumac
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 heaped tablespoon mayo or plain yoghurt

To be marinated:
1 whole cauliflower, peeled and broken into florets of medium to large size
2 cans chickpeas, drained and washed

Mix all of the marinade ingredients together, then add the chickpeas and cauliflower and mix as much as possible to spread the marinade all over the cauliflower, maybe cover the pot and give it all a good shake.

Put it in the fridge for 24 hours with a lid on and keep shaking it and stirring it up to spread the flavours around.

Heat the oven to 190C, cover the pot with foil and bake for 30-40 minutes. When the cauliflower starts to soften, remove the foil and roast until the cauliflower slightly chargrills and the garlic is roasted and the chickpeas are browning. I reckon to do it justice you need to allow another 20-25 minutes once the foil comes off to allow for things to get properly roasted and lovely and crunchy.

You’ll know when it’s done when the cauliflower looks a bit chargrilled and the chickpeas have a crunch and the remaining marinade is bubbling away.









Yum yum yum!!!

And with the remaining chickpeas…you guessed it, I turned some of them into yet another homous recipe, mixing them with tahini sauce.




And with the final remainder of the chickpeas, I laid them out in a single layer on an oven tray and put them back into the oven until they roasted some more and turned them into snack chickpeas.




20140216-154105.jpgSo much flavour! So much fun :))

Cauliflower and chickpea magic..

20140210-153559.jpgYou have seen me rave about the same marinated chickpea and potatoes dish a couple of times now, and I do truly love the dish, but I do struggle with the carb on carb element of the potatoes and chickpeas all in one dish, so for this week’s Fiesta Friday party held by The Novice Gardener I thought I would try out an alternative….

Introducing marinated and roasted cauliflower and chickpeas…oh yes!!! Big yum!!! It worked a treat, the cauliflower became infused with the flavours and I caught it just when it was sufficiently cooked and roasted and before it got mushy, whilst being soft enough to soak up some of the sauce as we ate it. Click back to the original recipe for the breakdown and just add chunks of cauliflower in place of the potatoes, or as well as if you fancy!

NOTE: If you follow the original recipe and cover the tray with foil and put it in the oven at 190C, after about 30 mins check on the cauliflower and make sure it’s cooking. Once it starts to soften, remove the foil and let it all get browned and slightly chargrilled with crunchy edges. Just watch it so that the cauliflower doesn’t get too soft and overcooked. Don’t cut the cauliflower chunks too small otherwise it will cook too fast for the chickpeas and garlic to roast nicely.

You’ll see from the photos how the marinade started to seep into the cauliflower by the change in colour, I kept giving it all a good shake as it marinaded to ensure the flavours spread all over the florets..




20140210-153648.jpgThe odd bit of chargrilled cauliflower just added to the flavour..



Lebanese inspired marinated and roasted chickpeas and potatoes. Warning: it’s soooooo tasty you’ll want to eat it all in one go!!!


I could literally eat this very single day!!! The marinade becomes the juice that the chickpeas and potatoes are cooked in and it’s BEAUTIFUL!!! There’s a lot of lemon in the sauce and mixed with everything else, it’s impossible to describe just how tasty it is. The key to success is to cook it long enough for the chickpeas to get crunchy.

900g floury potatoes (I use Maris Pipers and they work well and I just chuck in as many as I fancy really!)
3-5 lemons juiced
16 whole cloves garlic
150ml olive oil
1.5 tsp soft light brown sugar
3 tsp mayonnaise
1 tsp Harissa paste
1 tbsp tomato purée
2 x 400g tin of chickpeas (NOTE: if you’re a meat eater you can replace one of the tins of chickpeas with chicken breasts)
Salt and pepper

Peel and cut the potatoes into chunks, drain the chickpeas.

Mix all of the other ingredients together in a large oven proof dish, I use a large Pyrex dish that I can put into the oven, then add the potatoes and chickpeas and mix it all together well.

Put a lid on it and put it in the fridge for 24 hours.

The next day, preheat the oven to 180C in a fan oven. Cover the dish with foil and cook for 45 then remove the foil and cook until the potatoes are crispy and cooked through and the chickpeas get crunchy.







Perfect crispy roast potatoes..and parsnips…but mostly, perfect crispy roast potatoes 😀


’tis the time of year for roast dinners and beautiful roast potatoes and vegetables, although in my house, a roast is welcome any time of year!!

When I married my husband, I promised to love and cherish him til death do us part….AND learn how to cook a perfect roast!! Maybe not quite as official as that, but it was something I knew he loved to eat and I wanted to learn to make a good roast dinner (as good as, if not better than his Mum’s!!) and now, both of my boys love nothing more than roast chicken with all the trimmings including perfect crispy roast potatoes. I remember the roast dinners of my childhood and the potatoes were always the star dish ⭐️

This weekend I made a roast for my boys and our visitors and took some photos and notes as I made the roast potatoes in case it may be of interest…

I’m sure everyone has their perfect method, this is just mine ☺️

Preheat the oven to 190C (170C fan). Peel the potatoes and place them in a large saucepan and cover with water.

Bring it to the boil and turn the heat down enough for the pot to continue to boil for a good 5 minutes, a bit longer is fine, this is just to par boil the potatoes though, not completely boil them

Then drain the potatoes and – this is the key – keeping them in the saucepan, give them a good shake and break up the outsides of the potatoes

Then leave to one side to cool in their own steam. You can leave them for as long or as short a time as you like. During this time, pour a shallow layer of vegetable oil into your roasting tin and put it into the top of the oven to heat up

When the oil is very hot, add the potatoes to the pan carefully. I do it one by one with tongs. Be careful not to splash yourself with hot oil

Then spoon oil over each potatoes

And roast in the top of the oven for 40-60 mins depending on the size of the potatoes. Yesterday these were in the oven for 50 minutes.

Halfway through, take the pan out and baste each potato with hot oil again then put back into the oven

And watch them crisp up 😀

I cooked the parsnips in exactly the same way, par boiling them, draining them and shaking them up before roasting them in hot oil