tagged ‘honey’

Cauliflower, spinach & hazelnut salad with peanut butter dressing

in Savoury, Small bites, Taste -

Filled with so many colours and textures, this cauliflower, spinach & hazelnut salad with peanut butter dressing is perfect for the holiday season. 

Cauliflower, spinach & hazelnut salad with peanut butter dressing

I’ve been thinking about holiday meals a lot these past couple of weeks; ’tis the season I suppose, for gatherings, big or small, and tables filled with dishes reflecting seasonal colours, a celebratory mood and family or other traditions. There’s so much to enjoy during the colder months, so many beautiful ingredients, some discrete yet always reliable and others filled with wild colour and irresistible flavours. Cauliflower I feel is often left in the shadows, what with its pale skin and less than desirable cooking aromas; somehow though, it’s always been dear to my heart, much like a beautiful blank canvas, inviting and welcoming all at once. So when Blas Y Tir sent beautiful bundles of it, I could not wait to play around with the crunchy, snow white beauty. I’d already had very fond memories from working with their chubby, delicious spring potatoes and mixing them with fresh greens and smoked salmon, I was sure their winter produce would be qually satisfying, both to work with and to savour.

The cauliflower florets were delicious just freshly cut, with a deliciously crunchy flesh and slightly peppery flavour; roasted alongside gorgeous red onions & striking pumpkin wedges, slightly charred and at once still crunchy and soft, it was elevated to the great protagonist of a wintery, interesting and very delicious salad. The addition of crisp, fresh baby spinach, toasted butter-tasting hazelnuts and sweet baby raisins to the cauliflower gave colour, varied textures and flavours; finally, the smooth, lightly sweet peanut butter dressing brought everything together and added sweetness to the vegetables’ earthy aromas: a tablespoon of honey and a pinch of cinnamon, a touch of lime zest and sea salt flakes too for balance. I honestly can’t recommend this enough- it’s as simple as it gets, as colourful and as satisfying, while also looking mighty striking.

Cauliflower, spinach & hazelnut salad with peanut butter dressing Cauliflower, spinach & hazelnut salad with peanut butter dressing Cauliflower, spinach & hazelnut salad with peanut butter dressing Cauliflower, spinach & hazelnut salad with peanut butter dressing

Cauliflower, spinach & hazelnut salad with peanut butter dressing

WHAT (serves 2 as a main dish/ 4 as a side dish)

1 small cauliflower head, washed and cut in small florets

2 medium red onions, cut in thick wedges

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon fennel seeds

1/2 teaspoon runny honey

freshly ground black pepper

sea salt flakes 

a good drizzle of extra virgin olive oil

peanut butter dressing:

1/2 cup & 2 tablespoons smooth peanut butter

1 tablespoon honey

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1 lime (zest & juice)

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/3 teaspoon salt

about 4 tablespoons water

to serve: 

a few handfuls baby spinach leaves

1/3 cup toasted hazelnuts, 1/3 cup soft raisins

HOW

  1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC (160ºC FAN); place the cauliflower florets and onion wedges in a large baking tray. Add the spices, honey, seasoning and olive oil and gently toss to coat all the vegetables. Place in the oven for about 15’, or until tender but not mushy. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
  2. Make the peanut butter dressing by placing all the ingredients in a medium sized jar (or blender); add the water one tablespoon at a time, to achieve desired consistency (bear in mind that if you let it sit for a while, it will thicken- you can always thin it our with a splash of water). Test and adjust the seasoning to taste.
  3. Place a handful of baby spinach leaves on each plate, followed by a good amount of cauliflower florets & onion wedges. Drizzle generously with the dressing and serve the salad topped generously with toasted hazelnuts and raisins.

*This post was crated in collaboration with Blas Y Tir, but all opinions are my own. 

Cardamom & cocoa nib banana bread with coconut frosting

in Desserts, Taste -

Celebrating International Women’s Day with a cardamom & cocoa nib banana bread with coconut frosting. Sweet, powerful and perfect just the way it is.

Cardamom & cocoa nib banana bread with coconut frosting

Days designated specifically for celebrating anything tend to make cringe; be it grilled cheese or Valentine’s Day, my first instinct is to revolt and mock relentlessly. Yet, I have made my peace with Valentine’s Day, mostly because I love any excuse for a decadent dessert; and I have occasionally hoorayed for other, food related, days. Today, on International Women’s Day, my first instinct is to celebrate. [READ MORE]

Vegan nut, cocoa & olive oil spread

in Breakfast, Taste -

Vegan nut, cocoa & olive oil spread

Every time I’m reunited with my sister, there are certain things that always take place (almost in this specific order): we hug and kiss (dramatically, on my part- Alkyoni is way cooler than me to gasp and whisper sweet nothings to my ear); we exchange gifts, have our first coffee and gossip enthusiastically. And then, on to the main course, our first brawl. It’s loud, usually for a dumb reason and it escalates quickly. And then, like ten minutes later, we’ve apologised to each other, made up and are swiftly moving on to what really matters: food. [READ MORE]