The first two recipes on here are indeed both roasted veg. I am not ashamed. I will proudly yell from the rooftops my obsession with roasted vegetables.
I previously mentioned my favourite restaurant in the world, Miznon. Miznon does something special to their cauliflower. Some secret thing happens in the oven which makes it ever more succulent, melting in your mouth… and their pita blanche, a pita filled with this cauliflower brisé and tomatoes and scallions is unbeatable. UN-BEAT-ABLE ! I am obsessed with it. I will talk about it to anyone. I would eat it three times a week when I was living in Paris. I am not sure how much longer I will survive without it.
Their secret lies somewhere in the salt and heat, they use big flaky sea salt and a brick oven that I have not got access to. We have got this “special” salt at home, which you can buy at any supermarket in the UK. There is a smoked option which works wonders on roasted vegetables.
So, the recipe begins for me at Miznon. Raw vegetables are hard for a stomachless girl like me to eat, and I have found that the softer, the better. Also, the more flavours come out. The sweetness of a caramelised sweet potato after roasting in high heat is so different from simply boiling them. It tastes luxurious, and is actually so easy to create. The taste of cauliflower braised to perfection and covered in flaky salt, *chef’s kiss*. You can easily do this at home.
The first step is to take all of the vegetables that you want to enjoy, cut them into equally sized pieces, and lay them out on a baking tray. In the meantime, preheat the trusty grill to a high temperature. I choose whatever is in the fridge or on hand, and that turned out to be the following:
Cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, red onions, sweet potato. Done, easy, cut up and laid out. Next, drizzle olive oil over top. The hardest part of a food blog is that I rarely measure anything when I am cooking. I go on intuition. Add enough oil that the vegetables are all coated evenly, probably a few tablespoon’s worth. Then sprinkle salt and pepper over top. I usually then stick my hands in and rub all the veg around in the oil and spices, to make sure they are evenly coated. If you don’t want to get your hands dirty, you can pick up the sides of the foil and squidge it around.
Then, the oven! By now it should be hot enough. I put the veg into the grill, close the door, and hope for the best. I’ll check on them in 15 minutes, turn the tray around, and leave them alone again. In another 15 minutes, I will stick a fork into the potatoes and see if they’re good. You want the fork to enter the veg easily, no resistance, like butter. The tops of your cauliflower are probably looking a bit crispy and the sides of the sweet potatoes are likely browning, too. By now, I would take the veggies out unless they look like they could realllly use another 5-10 minutes. You don’t want to overcook them, though!
Look at that ! They smell and look divine. Now, I like to eat my roasted veggies over couscous, and this recipe is for that bowl. However, you can add over rice as well. Or just by itself. Anything goes.
While the veggies are cooking that last little bit, I prepare the couscous. Just as before; boil a kettle, pour over the couscous, cover, let sit a couple of minutes, fluff with a fork, and add a dollop of butter or a swig of olive oil. The vegetables you have prepared are very likely more than enough for two people. It’s also super easy to prepare two tray’s worth of the vegetables and swap their oven height halfway through cooking.
Sometimes, if feeling adventurous, one of my amazing flatmates will buy dry chickpeas and make falafel and hummus. His falafel challenges Miznon in a lovely way for best falafel ever. Maybe I will one day share his recipe for that on here. But today, I will taunt you with the pictures.
You could do store bought falafel and hummus on top, and I would not judge you. But do keep your eyes peeled for those recipes. Because nothing tastes better than eating the labours of your love. And they are just so dang easy to make.
Now, we have all of the ingredients separately, it’s time to bring them together. Pile the vegetables onto the couscous on the plate or bowl of your choosing, add some hummus on top, and I personally like to top my mix with some seeds. You can drizzle with more olive oil, sprinkle on more salt, even add balsamic vinegar if you’re feeling adventurous and want a more “salad” feel.
You’re ready to eat. And I promise, you will love every mouthful. I wish I had a stomach again just to eat the whole tray of vegetables. But, I do pretty well for myself on this meal. At least half of the tray does end up in my belly…
Keep your eyes peeled for a hummus recipe… and as always let me know what you think !
Roasted Veggie and Couscous Bowl
For the vegetables:
1/2 – 1 whole head cauliflower
1 – 2 sweet potatoes
1/2 – 1 whole red onion
5 – 10 Brussels sprouts
flaky sea salt
fresh ground black pepper
Preheat grill to 220ºC, 430ºF. Cut all of the vegetables into equally sized pieces, halving cauliflower florets and Brussels sprouts down the middle, slicing the red onion and cutting sweet potato into healthy sized chunks. You can add more or less vegetables to your liking. Lay on a baking tray on foil without overcrowding the tray. Drizzle olive oil on top, sprinkle with salt and pepper, mix until evenly coated. Place in grill for 15 minutes, turn trays, cook for another 15 minutes until tender.
For the couscous:
Follow package instructions.
Put the couscous in a bowl, add a handful of vegetables over top. Add hummus (and falafel, if you desire), sprinkle with mixed seeds, drizzle with olive oil.
Serve it all together, while hot !