Tuesday, January 09, 2018

Smoky baba ghanoush with roasted cauliflower, lentils & pomegranate

December 25, 2017

We hosted Christmas at our place this year, with a few of Cindy's family joining us for a laid-back lunch. We looked to Ottolenghi for ideas of course - Cindy's post next up will showcase the sweet potato recipe we made - but we also delved back into Community for this fancy cauliflower dish.

I made it easy on myself by making the baba ghanoush a day early - you could probably do it while everything else was going on, but my multi-tasking skills aren't up to three concurrent processes. Besides, a day in the fridge does wonders for the flavours of the baba ghanoush. 

When you combine all the bits and pieces, you wind up with a wonderful combination of flavours - smoky eggplant, bursts of sweet and tangy pomegranate, coriander and golden roasted cauliflower. I left the lentils a bit too long in the saucepan, so they lacked a bit of texture, but otherwise this was fantastic. It's a bit much for a school night, but a fantastic option when you're trying to impress guests or taking something to a picnic. Added bonus: we had heaps of baba ghanoush leftover to smear on toast and crackers.

Smoky baba ghanoush with roasted cauliflower, lentils & pomegranate
(from Community by Hetty McKinnon)

2 small cauliflowers, cut into florets
3 tablespoons olive oil
300g puy lentils
1 cup baby spinach
small bunch coriander
juice of half a lemon
1 pomegranate, seeds extracted
pomegranate molasses
salt and pepper

baba ghanoush
4 eggplants
4 tablespoons tahini
2 cloves garlic, minced
juice of 1 lemon
3 tablespoons yoghurt
5 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper

Make the baba ghanoush by roasting the eggplants directly over the flame of gas hobs (or under a hot grill if you don't have a gas stovetop). 

Give the eggplants 5-10 minutes, turning regularly until the skins are totally charred. Once they've cooled down, peel the skin off and pop the flesh and juices into a large bowl. 

Mash the eggplant roughly with a fork, leaving it a bit chunky. Stir through the tahini, garlic, lemon juice, yoghurt and olive oil and combine thoroughly. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

Preheat the oven to 200°C.

Coat the cauliflower florets in 3 tablespoons of olive oil and generously season with salt and pepper. Pop them in a baking tray and roast for half an hour until golden.

While they're roasting, prepare your lentils - 20 minutes or so in boiling water should have them tender without being overcooked.  Drain them.

Combine the cauliflower, lentils, spinach, coriander, the rest of the olive oil, more salt and pepper and lemon juice in a bowl.

Serve the cauliflower salad alongside a big dollop of baba ghanoush and scatter pomegranate seeds over everything. Finish off with a drizzle of pomegranate molasses and enjoy.


  1. Wow this looks really good - sounds like I need to find a celebration to take this to!

    1. Yes, Johanna - if you're gave for the open-flame eggplant roasting you should go for it!