Fall is coming and with it the return of the roasted vegetable at our house! Summer is just too hot to have the oven on at high temps for too long, so I rarely if ever roast veggies during the summer months. There’s been a touch of cool weather in the mornings here recently, so it was time to bring back the glory that is the roasted veggie! But since it is still pretty warm a cool, fresh salad is the perfect way to enjoy them.
Cauliflower is not something I enjoy much in its raw state unless it is drenched in good ranch dressing. But when roasted with olive oil, salt, pepper and some garlic it is transformed in to something super amazing. Here it also gets a tasty boost from cumin, which makes it next to impossible to resist snacking on before mixing it in with the rest of the ingredients for this salad.
The cauliflower gets combined with chickpeas, feta and pine nuts then tossed with a citrusy sumac dressing and peppery arugula. Sumac is a spice I’d never heard of before reading this recipe in the most current issue of Fine Cooking. I couldn’t find it at my grocery store and had to order it from amazon. If you don’t have it or can’t find it, don’t worry. It’s a nice spice and goes very well with all the flavors in the salad, but I didn’t find it to be a stand out in the dressing. It may not be the same without the sumac, but it will still be great.
I served this along side pork tenderloin and crusty bread the night I made it. The next couple days I ate it with some additional arugula and spring mix for a super satisfying lunch. The arugula will get wilted, so adding in some new lettuce is a good way to keep it fresh. If you wanted to make this ahead of time you could toss everything together except for the arugula and refrigerate it overnight. Toss with the arugula right before serving and enjoy!
Cauliflower & Chickpea Salad with Feta, Pine Nuts and Arugula
From Fine Cooking
- 1 large head cauliflower (about 2-1/4 lb.), trimmed and cut into 1-inch florets
- 5 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 small clove garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons sumac
- 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 5 ounces baby arugula
- 3 ounces crumbled feta (1/2 cup)
- 1/3 cup dried currants (I did not use these)
- 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
- Preheat oven to 425°F. On a large rimmed baking sheet toss cauliflower with a good drizzle of olive oil, salt, pepper and the cumin. Roast for 20-25 minutes, tossing halfway through, then remove from the oven and let cool.
- In a large bowl whisk together lemon juice, sumac, garlic, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and some fresh ground pepper, then whisk in 3 tablespoons of olive oil.
- Add the cauliflower, chickpeas, pine nuts, currants (if using), and feta to the dressing and toss together. Refrigerate now to server later or toss with the arugula and serve.