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Author Notes: My homage to my favorite dish at Phoenix restaurant Pita Jungle, it's charred and roasty cauliflower topped with a tangy lemon-garlic-tahini sauce with plenty of paprika, and covered in crispy sauteed onions! —Amanda Hepler (oven & apron)
- 1 head golden cauliflower
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
Fried Onions / Tahini Sauce
- 1 large red onion, halved and sliced very thin
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- kosher salt, to taste
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil (reserved from the onions - see instructions)
- 1/8 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 5 teaspoons fresh minced parsley
- 1/2 cup tahini (I used Joyva brand)
- Preheat your oven to 450 degrees. While the oven heats, prepare the onions. In a medium skillet over medium heat, allow half of the olive oil to heat. Once hot, add half of the sliced onion and cook, stirring often, until the onions are dark golden brown and crispy. Be careful, they can go from perfect to burned very fast! Remove the browned onions to a plate lined with a paper towel, and repeat this process to cook the second half of the onions with the remaining oil. Sprinkle the onions with salt and set aside. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the oil from the fried onions, discarding the rest.
- Trim the head of cauliflower to remove any leaves and the thick stem end, rinse the cauliflower well and pat dry. Cut into thick slices and cut these slices into medium- and small-sized florets. Toss the cauliflower in a bowl with 3 tablespoons of olive oil and the salt and pepper. Place in a single layer on a sheet pan and roast in your preheated oven for 12 minutes. Turn on the broiler, and cook the cauliflower directly under the broiler for 5 minutes. Stir, and broil 3 minutes more.
- While the cauliflower browns in the broiler, prepare the tahini sauce. In the same skillet that the onions were cooked in, heat the 2 tablespoons of reserved olive oil over medium-low heat. Once the oil is hot, add the minced garlic along with the salt and pepper, and cook briefly until the garlic is just turning pale golden. Add the lemon juice, paprika and 1 tablespoon of the minced parsley and remove the pan from the heat. Add in the tahini. Stir well to incorporate the tahini. Do not overheat the sauce once the tahini has been added, cause it’ll seize up and be kinda awful. Scoop the cauliflower into a serving bowl or platter and spoon over the tahini sauce. Mound up the fried onions over the top, and sprinkle with the remaining 2 teaspoons of fresh parsley.