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I didn’t want to waste any of the cauliflower which is why the ‘steaks’ are served on top of the mash. The dish also works very well as it is, though, without the mash, if you want to do without. In this case the leftover cauliflower can simply be added to a salad, coarsely grated, thinly sliced or just broken into small florets. If you do make the mash you’ll have twice as much as you need for this recipe. It keeps in the fridge for 3 days and can be warmed through for another meal. It’s great served alongside sausages or any grilled meat, or just spread on toast for a snack. I’ve been using the spice blend za’atar – a mix of sumac, sesame seeds and hyssop – in my cooking for many years. The availability of the fresh herb Zahter, though, preserved in oil and vinegar, is a new addition to my pantry and one I could get a little bit addicted to. It has long thin leaves like thyme but, unlike thyme, is something you can eat quite a lot of as it is, spooned alongside all sorts of grilled meats. It’s not cheap, but a little goes a very long way your jar will last you a good long time. It’s not widely available in supermarkets, at the moment, so you’ll need to go online to find it. Picked oregano leaves can also be used, as an alternative. With credit to David Bravo, one of our chefs in Spitalfields. Serves four, as a starter


Total time



  • 70 g unsalted butter
  • 2 sprigs sage
  • 8 strips lemon skin (finely shaved)
  • 1½ tbsp tahini paste
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp olive oil (if using oregano instead of the zahter)
  • 1 onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 tbsp cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 3 tbsp zahter (drained from its oil)
  • 20 g baby capers (pat dried)
  • 5 g coriander (roughly chopped)
  • salt


    View the recipe instructions at Ottolenghi

Contains allergens
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