Meat Free Monday


Image: Andrew Scrivani for The New York Times

Clearing out the cupboards after Christmas, I came across a jar of tahini which I had bought to make hummous, but then had forgotten about. Searching online for another way to use the jar, I came across today’s recipe for roasted cauliflower with a tahini sauce.

Tahini is made with sesame seeds and contains copper and manganese, as well as calcium, iron, vitamin B1 and dietary fiber.  It has a mild, nutty flavor and a wonderful creamy texture.

Roasted Cauliflower with Tahini and Parsley Sauce


  • 1 large cauliflower, broken into florets
  • Salt to taste
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 to 3 garlic cloves, to taste, cut in half, green shoots removed
  • 1 cup sesame tahini
  • 1/4 to 3/4 cup fresh lemon juice, to taste
  • 1 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley (2 bunches)


1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil, and fill a bowl with ice water. When the water comes to a boil, salt generously and add the cauliflower. Blanch for two minutes, and transfer to the ice water. Drain and blot dry. Transfer to a baking dish.

2. Season the cauliflower with salt and pepper, and toss with the olive oil. Place in the oven, and roast for 30 to 40 minutes, stirring from time to time, until tender and lightly browned.

3. Puree the garlic cloves with 1/4 teaspoon salt in a mortar and pestle. Transfer to a bowl, and whisk in the sesame tahini. Whisk in the lemon juice, beginning with the smaller amount. The mixture will stiffen up. Gradually whisk in up to 1/2 cup water, until the sauce has the consistency of thick cream (or runny yogurt). Stir in the parsley. Taste, and adjust salt and lemon juice. Serve with the cauliflower. You will have some sauce left over.

Recipe Source: Martha Rose Shulman