Friday, March 4, 2016

CooktheBookFridays Dukkah~Roasted Cauliflower

The Dukkah nuts and spices

Roasted Cauliflower is one of those dishes that I grew up on. I adore roasted veggies,  especially Cauliflower.  Growing up  in a Lebanese family, it was something my grandmother made regularly. Always a part of our meatless Friday meals. Those days when you couldn't eat meat on Friday if you were Catholic. Anyone remember meatless Fridays? I love the way cauliflower caramelizes as it roasts. So when I saw this recipe as our pick this week, I was excited. 

The Cauliflower baked and ready to eat...not so pretty but totally delicious

However, the Dukkah was something new to me. In my family we use za'atar, which is a mixture of sumac, wild thyme and sesame seeds. I buy mine, ready to use, at the Middle Eastern market in Paterson. Dukkah is an Egyptian mixture of nuts and spices. The aroma, as you roast each spice separately, is heavenly. Then they are ground together. "Oh My God"!! David said, I would say it! He was right!

For this dish you break your cauliflower into florets. Place them onto a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for about 20 minutes, turning halfway through. At this point sprinkle with the Dukkah mixture, and stir to coat.  Bake for another 20 minutes. As this bakes, the aroma permeates your kitchen with the most wonderful fragrance

I ate this by myself (hubby doesn't do cauliflower) for my lunch. It was absolutely amazing!! Oh My God! Happy Friday everyone! 

The Dukkah...a new addition to my kitchen
Cauliflower ready for the oven
Loved the flavor the Dukkah added to the Cauliflower...OH MY GOD!

This recipe participates with CooktheBookFridays. We are cooking through David Lebovitz' new cookbook, "My Paris Kitchen". We do not post the recipes unless they have been previously published. The Dukkah recipe was found here. and here.
If you don't have David's book, you might pick up a copy, and join us in the fun of CooktheBookFridays. We'd love to have you!

Egyptian Spiced Nut Mix (Dukkah) 

From My Paris Kitchen: Recipes and Stories, by David Lebovitz (Ten Speed Press, 2014)

Makes 1½ cups (150g)

½ cup (50g) hazelnuts
1/3 cup (50g) sesame seeds
¼ cup (35g) hulled pumpkin seeds
2 tablespoons whole coriander seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1½ teaspoons black peppercorns
1 teaspoon sea salt or kosher salt

1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF (180ºC).
2. Spread the hazelnuts on a baking sheet and toast them for 8 to 10 minutes, until the nuts are lightly browned and most of the skins are loosened. Remove from the oven. When the nuts are cool enough to handle, rub them briskly in a kitchen towel to remove as much of the skins as possible. Put the nuts into a bowl.
3. Heat a skillet on the stove top over medium heat. Start with the sesame seeds, spreading them in an even layer in the pan and shaking or stirring them frequently, until they crackle and become lightly browned. Scrape them into the bowl with the hazelnuts. Then toast the pumpkin seeds, then the coriander, the cumin, and finally the fennel seeds in the same way, adding each to the bowl as it is done. Finally, toast the peppercorns. Most will take less than a minute. Add the salt.
4. Grind the nuts, seeds, and spices, in a mortar and pestle, with a spice grinder, or in the bowl of a mini food processor, working in batches if necessary, until the mixture is well ground together, but not too fine.
Dukkah will keep for about a month stored in an airtight jar at room temperature.

Variations: Use toasted almonds, peanuts, or cashews in place of the hazelnuts. Make a quick dip by stirring together ¾ cup (75g) of dukkah with 6 tablespoons (90ml) of olive oil in a small bowl.


  1. I always have za'atar in my spice rack. Now I'm wondering if I could make that too.

  2. I wish I grew up with roasted vegetables - we boiled everything. Since we weren't Catholic, Fridays were a free for all when it came to meat; but there was no alcohol in our house and we couldn't go to the movies, so I call it even :-)

  3. Hi Kathy:)
    I LOVE roasted cauliflower! Unlike you, the only way we had cauliflower when we were kids was breaded and fried, which by the way, I adore too:)

    I've actually bought Dukkah at Trader Joe's. I haven't tried using it this way which I will be doing now.

    Thank you so much for sharing, Kathy...

  4. I was a Vatican II kid, so it was only Good Friday when we had to worry. I think they've added a few more days to the calendar now. I love za'atar, but I'm very happy to have been introduced to dukkah, too!

  5. This was the first time I tried dukkar and was very impressed. It is so easy to make and
    was delicious on the cauliflower. I'm going to try it on some chicken and see how that works out.

  6. I am a cauliflower fan so I knew I would like this dish. I first purchased Dukkah when Trader Joe's first put it on their shelves two years ago. In fact, I gave it as presents to many of my friends. I had no idea. We just started sprinkling it on everything!!! BUT, I never had tried it with cauliflower. Yours looks delicious as if it could jump off the page.

  7. I always love this nutty spice mix. This looks so delicious!

  8. I love cauliflower and dukkah, so this looks amazing to me.

  9. I am so thrilled to see someone else's cauliflower turned out like mine- it was delicious wasn't it?

  10. I love zaatar and now another favourite spice on my list, Dukkah!
    These cauliflower are delicious!

  11. Looks incredible, Kathy! Funny, though, I am roasting (Romanesco) cauliflower for dinner (and blog) today!

  12. Kathy, Very lovely color in your roasted cauliflower. Glad you enjoyed it. i remember liking zaatar cooking with Nigella, which i think is more pronounced than dukkah. i am going to try dukkah as a dip next, soon.

  13. Great looking cauliflower, Kathy! Such a delicious rendition of this veggie! I love za'atar, too, and have yet to roast cauliflower with it. Adding that to my arsenal as well!

  14. you can make any spice blend you just takes time and effort.
    I think hubby missed out but yay for you because you had it all to yourself.
    I grew up Catholic too...we usually had veggie soup (make with chicken stock!!) and my mom always told me that when she was growing up for some reason they had homemade bread and chocolate pudding on Fridays for dinner. I'm not sure what my grandmother was thinking since she makes some of the best baked beans I've tasted!

  15. Wow - this sounds heavenly! What an amazing dish. Roasting cauliflower has made a fan out of me!

  16. Wow, I just roasted broccoli. Your topping sounds so delicious! I remember meatless Fridays and am always grateful they gave us the Friday Fish Fry tradition!

  17. I'm not sure if the blogosphere ate my comment. Delete this if it's a duplicate :)
    Bill's missing out. The cauliflower was amazing! I've already made it three times. I have za'atar in the pantry and use it on baked chicken. How else should I try it?

  18. I would love to try this---definitely a new spice combo for me. Wonder what Bill would think???? LOL.

  19. I LOVE roasting spices Kathy! So I have to give this recipe a try. Are there other uses for Dukkah? Cauliflower is one of our favorite vegetables, I am simply interested if there were other uses.

  20. Your cauliflower looks delectable - I love all kinds of roasted cauliflower. It's become quite the It vegetable, hasn't it?

    My parents could have definitely used more veggie recipes like this one for Lent Fridays! You brought back memories of cheese and veggie pizza and tuna sandwiches.

  21. I am new to roasted cauliflower, but it will be making a repeat appearance for sure! I sliced mine as David instructed, but I think next time I will just break it up into florets like you did. Yours look delicious!