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Roasted Cauliflower & Pomegranate Tahini Sauce

I love roasting vegetables. It is my favorite way of consuming natures bounty. If you don’t like cauliflower I will bet that you will love this dish. That’s how good it is! It’s also very quick and easy. Traditionally in Lebanese cooking cauliflower is deep fried and then eaten with lemony tahini sauce. This is a healthier play on that with no frying.

To start take a whole cauliflower head and cut off the stem. Slice apart the florets and half any huge ones. Place them in a bowl and generously coat them with vegetable oil and a sprinkling of Kosher salt. Put them in a pan and place them in a 475 degree preheated oven. Cook them for around 4o-45 min with occasional flipping. You could also initially cover them with aluminum foil for the first 20 min and get them tender fast. You just need to make sure it doesn’t “steam” till the end. They need to be roasted so make sure there is enough oil on them to bring out the sweetness. They should be a bit firmer and slightly darker when you pull them out. Sometimes I just stop here, add some salt or a squirt of lemon and I’m good to go. But this time, the sauce is madness, so lets keep going…

While the cauliflower is cooking, its on to the sauce which is really what this dish is about. It’s very easy. All you need is some Tahini paste (the sesame paste normally used in making hummus), pomegranate molasses and some water.

Pomegranate molasses has a tacky texture and is dark in color. It is sweet and sour at the same time and is a great addition to any vinaigrette. You can usually find Tahini at Kroger now, but I’m not sure about the pomegranate molasses. It is a staple in middle eastern stores if you have one near you. If not, your best bet is to order some online.

Take 4 large tablespoons of Tahini and 2 of the pomegranate molasses then a few tablespoons of water to it and whisk. You may adjust the amounts as you like. If it is too nutty for you add some more pomegranate, just be careful it’s not too sour. Adjust the thickness via the water. It needs to be similar to that of maple syrup. I cannot give an exact measurement on the amounts because each pomegranate molasses has a different thickness and the recipe should be adjusted to taste. If its too sour for you try adding a little more tahini and water.

Once its just right and the cauliflower is done, just drizzle it on top and serve! This can also be served cold and is great wrapped in pita bread sandwiches. The natural cauliflower sweetness that comes out in the roasting pairs beautifully to the nutty & slightly sour sauce that it sits in. So good. You absolutely must make this. The flavors are like nothing you have had before. Enjoy!

Seva – Vegetarian Cuisine – Detroit

Seva - Detroit

Seva has made a name for itself in Ann Arbor, serving fresh and delicious vegetarian cuisine. Now, they have opened a second location in Detroit. Don’t turn your nose up at the word “vegetarian”. Dining there, you won’t even feel like a protein is missing from the plate. On the contrary, each dish is packed with flavor and deliciousness. I couldn’t decide what to order off the Seva menu because everything sounded so good!

Seva - Detroit

Seva, is very conveniently located on Forest, between Woodward and John R. It’s smack dab in the middle of the Wayne State district, the DMC, MOCAD and everything else. Great and convenient location.

Seva - Detroit

My sister-in-law had already had dinner so she had the house salad with ranch ($4).

I couldn’t decide what to order, so I asked the waiter what their signature dish was. He said the Enchiladas Calabaza! So, I went for it.

Seva - Detroit

Enchiladas Calabaza are made with – Butternut squash, cream cheese and green onions with chiles, cumin and a hint of cinnamon, baked in organic corn tortillas, topped with spicy tomato sauce & cheese, served with house-made corn chips & salsa ($13.00).

My oh my was that a good choice! It was amazing with the creamy squash, tangy sweet tomato sauce, and cheesy goodness. I’m drooling as I write this. So good. I would love to have some right now. It does come with chips and salsa. I could’ve done without those. The chips were not crunchy enough and just detracted from the dish. More enchiladas por favor!

Seva - Detroit

Mike had the Cilantro Peanut Stirfry made with – Stir-fried broccoli, red & yellow peppers, mushrooms, mung sprouts, carrots and green onions with a spicy cilantro-peanut-ginger-lime sauce, over organic brown rice, topped with roasted peanut ($12). He said it was delicious. I had a taste. It was pretty good.

Seva - Detroit

Sam can’t see a Portabella Burger on any menu and not order it. His all time favorite is at Bastone, and its usually hard to stack up to anywhere since at Bastone they put a big dollop of  garlic & herb Boursin cheese.

Portabella Burger made with – Organic, chargrilled portabella mushroom on an organic bun, with lettuce,  tomato, cheese and sauce ($11). All sandwiches are served with Yam fries.

He liked the burger, but Bastone’s is still his favorite. The yam fries were refreshing to have instead of regular fries. They were absolutely perfect.

Seva - Detroit

They are also known for their freshly squeezed juices and smoothies. My SIL had the Tropics blended drink – Frozen strawberries, bananas and mango nectar ($5). She loved it.

I would definitely recommend dining there, or stopping in for lunch. The food was fresh and delicious, the service was good and the new location is awesome. Also, expect this to be a popular spot. Word was barely out about their new Detroit location and it was pretty full. Seva gets a hell yeah! from me. How was your experience?

Seva Detroit on Urbanspoon

Lebanese Tabbouleh Recipe – Easy Salad

When I was a kid, my mum would sit with a bunch of parsley, the queen of the den, her full attention on me. As we talked about my day, her hands would not stop working. She would snip off the stems of the parsley and place the feathery leafs into a bowl. The next day we would have a beautiful vivid green salad, that packed a punch of flavor.

Tabbouleh

The truth is parsley is one of those things  you either love or hate. Since I grew up with tabouleh I love the stuff. My hubby on the other hand, has an aversion to the stuff. But how can’t you love this lemony fresh salad?

If you have never had tabbouli then it is your moral obligation to get up right now, drive over to your grocery store and start chopping!

Its actually very simple to make and you need very few ingredients and just a bit of patience with the parsley. The rest is easy peezy!

Heres what you need:

  1. One Parsley Bunch (3 chopped cups)
  2. Two Tomatoes
  3. Four Green Onions
  4. Three Lemons
  5. Two Table Spoons Olive Oil
  6. 1/4 cup Burgul
  7. 1/4 cup Water

Tabbouleh

Lets start with the parsley. Start by removing the stems. I usually do this the night before while watching TV.
Tabbouleh

The next day, make sure to wash the parsley before chopping away. You want to get a really fine chop on it, and that might take a few runs. I usually start by grabbing it in bunches, rolling it up and cutting it up again and again.

Tabbouleh
Tabbouleh

Tabbouleh

Add the water to the bulgur. The grain will soak up the water and fluff up a bit. You don’t want to add so much that its soggy.
Tabbouleh

Tabbouleh

Chop up the green onions and tomatoes….and your ready to go!
Tabbouleh
Tabbouleh

Then, just add everything up in a bowl, the veggies, the oil, the lemon juice… and mix away! Oh, and don’t forget the salt.
Tabbouleh

Traditionally, Tabbouleh is served with hearts of lettuce or cabbage leaves.
Tabbouleh

Tabbouleh

Tabbouleh

Tabbouleh

Tabbouleh

You can also store it in the fridge, and take some to work the next day (just make sure to check your teeth after). Oh, and your welcome. :)

Hummus – Roasted Red Peppers – Avocado

Hummus

EVERYONE and their mother loves hummus. This is my old school Lebanese recipe. It’s vegetarian/vegan of course, as humus should be! No bacon to muck it up please.

I like to make it from scratch, meaning, dried chickpeas / garbanzo beans. If you want to save time, you can just used canned chickpeas and skip the next few steps.

You have to start the night before. Take a little over 2 cups dried beans and soak them generously with 1 teaspoon baking soda.

The next day, before boiling, just wash them out and add to a pot and immerse in water. Make sure all the chickpeas are submerged and there is enough water for them to absorb.

Hummus

Boil it for at least 20 min. Make sure the chickpeas melt when put in your mouth. Check on them regularly. Don’t over cook or the whole thing will turn to mush and you will have a saucy hot mess.

Consider yourself WARNED about the over cooking and one more thing…DON”T cover the pot or the water will foam up and boil over onto your stove. Don’t forget then blame me, aight?

Hummus

For the recipe start with

  • 4 cups cooked/canned chickpeas
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup tahini (ground sesame seeds)
  • don’t forget the salt

Hummus

Use a food processor if you have one. If you don’t you can use a blender, but it will come out chunkier and you will need to work in smaller batches.

Add the chickpeas first and start blending. WHHRRRRrrrrrrrrrrr (sound of blender, yeh, im a dork)
Hummus

keep going…WHHRRRRrRrrrrrr
Hummus

Till the garbanzo beans are pulverized
Hummus

Add the garlic….then WWWHHRRRRRR (I add less because my hubby likes it less garlicky)
Hummus

I love mine lemony so I use 1/2 cup, but you can add less if ya like..then…WHHHRRRRRR..

Hummus

Then let it WWWHHRRRRRR while you slowly drizzle in the tahini. The more you add the creamier it is.
Hummus

And Voila. Hummus…yum yumm…
Hummus

Now you can go ahead and plate it and eat, or like out the bowl or whatever you like…or….
Hummus

OR…jazz it up a bit and make a hummus TRIO!

You will need some avocados and some Roasted Red Peppers

Hummus

This doesn’t need precise measuring. I added 2 avocados to about a cup and a half of the hummus puree.

WHHHRRRRR……

Hummus

It was sooo green and yummy….next time i might even add some tomatoes and onions and make Guacummus…get it? Yeh, again, I can be realllly not funny, but you know you laughed anyways :)

Hummus

On to the peppers….WHHHRRRRRrrrrr

Hummus

and more yum!

Hummus

I wanted to spice up the presentation and plate it up appetizer style, layer the 3, act like I’m Martha Stewart…so your welcome in advance for the following hummus food porn.

Hummus

Hummus

Hummus

Hummus

Hummus

Hummus

Like I said..no need to thank me :) Also, check out the Baba Ghanoush I made.

always uncut,

Mira.

Lebanese Mutabal – Baba Ghanoush

Mutabal - Baba Ghanoush

Remember the  Baba Ghanoush I made last week? Well, what I’m posting about is what the west considers as Baba Ghanoush. In Lebanon, we call it Mutabal. Just wanted to be clear on the two. I don’t care what you call either, because they are both YUMMY!

Now, you prepare the eggplant like I did in the baba ghanouj post. I still prefer grilling the eggplant if possible to give a smoky taste, but its good to just pop em in the oven and make a bunch for a big batch. You can easily freeze the rest too.

What you need for the Mutabal:

  • 1 eggplant
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 4  Tb tahini
  • 1 lemon
  • olive oil

And thats it! Can you believe something so yummy is so simple.

Add the garlic and lemon.

Mutabal - Baba Ghanoush

I decided to use an immersion blender. Most people use a blender.

Mutabal - Baba Ghanoush

Add the tahini.

Mutabal - Baba Ghanoush

and blend blend blend. Salt to taste, and also add more tahini or lemon as you like. Its very forgiving.

Mutabal - Baba Ghanoush

You drizzle olive oil on top, and garnish with paprika and parsley.

Mutabal - Baba Ghanoush

Now, try making that and tell me you don’t love me. :)

Dale & Thomas Popcorn – Purple Spoon Ice Cream

Dale & Thomas Popcorn - Purple Spoon 

Last Royal Oak visit, we decided to get some Popcorn at Dale & Thomas. Purple spoon has opened in the same space and I guess its a knock off of pinkberry. I’ve never had the latter so I can’t compare the two.Dale & Thomas Popcorn - Purple Spoon 

I really loved the signs, design and feel for the place. There was a huge image of a corn field that was lit and it set a light and happy tone for the location.Dale & Thomas Popcorn - Purple Spoon 

Many popcorn flavors like you see below, from BBQ to cheddar-chipotle. We tend to be sweet salty luvin kinda ppl so we went for…Dale & Thomas Popcorn - Purple Spoon 

…The chocolate Chunk Caramel. We ate it for 2 days, and it was divine. The cookies n creme would be interesting to try next time.Dale & Thomas Popcorn - Purple Spoon 

Very cute decor, very bad acting on my part.Dale & Thomas Popcorn - Purple Spoon 

I loved how they presented the popcorn, in the farmers wood buckets.Dale & Thomas Popcorn - Purple Spoon 

In the back the popcorn was popping away, the smell wafting beautifully thru the room.Dale & Thomas Popcorn - Purple Spoon 

They had a turning urn thing that you add the flavor to and it keeps rotating to cover all the popcorn.Dale & Thomas Popcorn - Purple Spoon 

They made the chocolate caramel by drizzling it all over a pan of popcorn, and letting set.Dale & Thomas Popcorn - Purple Spoon 

It was crunchy, fresh, sweet, salty and perfect. I loved that there were big chunks of chocolate here and there. It was a really good treat.Dale & Thomas Popcorn - Purple Spoon 

As for the Purple Spoon part of it, the decor is a bit more modern and minimalistic. It’s theme doesn’t mesh 100% with the farmers theme of the popcorn part, but it’s not too bad. Also, if you buy the popcorn first, they will give you a coupon (1$ off) of the icecream.Dale & Thomas Popcorn - Purple Spoon 

Positives is the low calorie. Negatives are that flavors are limited, but they cycle them. I had the original tart. It was good. Not great, but good.Dale & Thomas Popcorn - Purple Spoon Dale & Thomas Popcorn - Purple Spoon 

You can add toppings for 75 cents each. I’m not a toppings fan in general, but if I were going to try something it would be the fruit or candy. I would skip the cereal.Dale & Thomas Popcorn - Purple Spoon Dale & Thomas Popcorn - Purple Spoon

The frozen yogurt was good, but I don’t see myself ever craving it. I’m a bit of an ice cream snob i guess.

As for the popcorn, I loved it, and my glass ball says there is more salty sweet popcorniness in my future.

always uncut.
Dale and Thomas Popcorn on Urbanspoon
Purple Spoon Contemporary Frozen Yogurt on Urbanspoon

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