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Oven-crisped florets get bright, rich flavor from a tomato-tahini rub
Milk Street Bowtie Roasted Cauliflower with Tahini and Lemon

Roasted Cauliflower with Tahini and Lemon

Appears in July-August 2019

40 minutes

Roasted Cauliflower with Tahini and Lemon

Free

In the Levant, cauliflower often is deep fried and paired with tahini. We ditched the deep-fryer and opted for high-heat roasting. But first we coat the cauliflower with a little cornstarch mixed with oil, tomato paste and tahini. The starch helps the florets develop crisp, nicely browned exteriors. A little hot sauce in the coating adds some piquancy; we preferred brands that aren't too vinegary, such as Cholula and Tapatío. Cilantro and lemon, added just before serving, brighten up the colors and flavors.

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons tahini, plus more to serve
1 tablespoon hot sauce (see note)
2 teaspoons cornstarch
2 - 2½ pound head cauliflower, trimmed, cored and cut into 1½- to 2-inch florets
¼ cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest, plus lemon wedges to serve
Ingredients
  • 3
  • 3

    tablespoons tomato paste

  • 2

    tablespoons tahini, plus more to serve

  • 1

    tablespoon hot sauce (see note)

  • 2

    teaspoons cornstarch

  • 2 - 2½

    pound head cauliflower, trimmed, cored and cut into 1½- to 2-inch florets

  • ¼

    cup finely chopped fresh cilantro

  • 1

    tablespoon grated lemon zest, plus lemon wedges to serve

More

Sides

Down arrow

Roasted Cauliflower with Tahini and Lemon

Get Ready to Cook

4

Servings

40 minutes

Tip

Don't forget to line the baking sheet with foil, then coat it liberally with cooking spray. This helps prevent sticking and scorching. Also, don't stir the cauliflower as it roasts; undisturbed cooking allows the florets to crisp well and brown deeply.

Ingredients
  • 3
  • 3

    tablespoons tomato paste

  • 2

    tablespoons tahini, plus more to serve

  • 1

    tablespoon hot sauce (see note)

  • 2

    teaspoons cornstarch

  • 2 - 2½

    pound head cauliflower, trimmed, cored and cut into 1½- to 2-inch florets

  • ¼

    cup finely chopped fresh cilantro

  • 1

    tablespoon grated lemon zest, plus lemon wedges to serve

Step 1 of 3

Prepare Oven

Heat the oven to 500°F with a rack in the middle position. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and spray generously with cooking spray.

Step 2 of 3

Combine Ingredients and Cook Cauliflower

3
tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3
tablespoons tomato paste
2
tablespoons tahini
1
tablespoon hot sauce
2
teaspoons cornstarch
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
2 - 2½
pound head cauliflower, trimmed, cored and cut into 1½- to 2-inch florets

In a large bowl, whisk together the oil, tomato paste, tahini, hot sauce, cornstarch, 2 tablespoons water, 2 teaspoons salt and 1 teaspoon pepper. Add the cauliflower and toss with your hands, rubbing the mixture into the florets.


Transfer the cauliflower to the prepared baking sheet and turn the florets cut side down as much as possible. Roast without stirring until tender and lightly charred, 25 to 30 minutes.

Step 3 of 3

Serve Cauliflower

¼
cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
1
tablespoon grated lemon zest, plus lemon wedges to serve
tahini to serve

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, stir together the cilantro and lemon zest. When the cauliflower is done, transfer to a platter, then sprinkle with the cilantro-zest mixture. Serve with lemon wedges and additional tahini for drizzling.

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Roasted Cauliflower with Tahini and Lemon

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