Salatet Arnabeet Ma’ Tahineh Wa Bassal (Cauliflower Salad with Tahini & Onions )

March 29, 2017
6 Ratings
Photo by Ria Osbourne
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

Cauliflower is eaten everywhere in Palestine and has been for thousands of years. Here is a super simple and quick recipe that I used to make in my restaurant, Baity Kitchen. It will most certainly be a head turner for those who normally shy away from such vegetables.

Photography by Ria Osbourne, food by Joudie Kalla and publisher Jacqui Small from Quatro publishing.
joudie Kalla

What You'll Need
  • For the salad:
  • 2 heads cauliflower, broken into florets
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large red onion, sliced into half-moons
  • 2 teaspoons za'atar
  • Sea salt
  • 1 bunch arugula
  • 150 grams (5 1/2 ounces) large green olives, preferably Middle Eastern
  • 2 tomatoes, cut into wedges
  • 1 red chile, sliced into rings
  • For the dressing:
  • 4 tablespoons tahini
  • 2 tablespoons Greek yogurt
  • Juice of 4 lemons
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  1. Preheat the oven to 425° F (220° C). Put the cauliflower florets on a baking tray. Pour over the oil and scatter over half the onions, the za'atar, and a sprinkle of salt and mix so that it is all coated. Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes.
  2. When the cauliflower has cooked and charred, remove the tray from the oven and add the arugula, olives, tomatoes, and sliced chile and mix together.
  3. To make the dressing, mix the tahini, yogurt, and lemon juice together in a small bowl. Add the salt and a little water if you need more liquid—you are aiming for the consistency of heavy cream. Once you have a nice tangy flavor that you are happy with, drizzle the dressing over the top of the cauliflower salad and serve warm.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Mamasays
  • Angie
  • Christine
  • Nathan

5 Reviews

Christine February 19, 2023
Had a recipe from a cookbook called Zaitoun I was making tonight with some flatbread and wanted a roasted cauliflower recipe. Finding this recipe felt like fate! It was delicious and it was so interesting to read the related article about the author of this recipe.

I did make a few changes to suit my kids' tastebuds - used a bit less lemon (used a little water to thin it out as needed), added a little honey to the dressing, and only added a pinch of salt to the dressing. Also, reduced the amount of green olives as my husband and I love them but it's the only thing our 12 year old doesn't like. Adding to my excitement is the fact that my 2 year old ate more cauliflower than chicken. Will definitely make again.

Thank you for this delicious ode to your heritage!
Mamasays August 29, 2021
I think delicious. I used the other half of onions raw in salad. Also jaded some sliced preserved lemons and Aleppo pepper flakes.
Angie April 18, 2019
Where do I add the other half of the onions? I see that someone else saw this and that no one responded. Also please put an amount next to the amount of salt so that others aren't confused as to how it is written.
Nathan April 25, 2018
I tried making this recipe and found that 2 teaspoons of salt in the dressing was too much and I had to make a new batch. I would recommend starting with maybe 1/2 teaspoon of salt and adding to taste.
neighome May 7, 2017
Is the recipe missing 1/2 the onions? It says to scatter 1/2 the onions over the cauliflower before it goes in the onion. I don't see where to add the other half.