This Middle Eastern-inspired dish presents itself as exceptionally fanciful, but it comes together quick enough for a weekday dinner while bringing an array of wonderful textures to the table. If using thicker carrots, slice them in half lengthwise before roasting.
Za’atar is a cherished Middle Eastern spice blend consisting of sumac, sesame seeds, and herbs such as thyme. One taste and you’ll be looking to add it to dishes wherever you can. It can punch up everything from salad dressings to soups, roasted vegetables, and dips.
To save time in the kitchen, consider making big batches of ancient grains at once and then freezing extras for future use.
Bring 2 cups (500 mL) water to a boil in medium-sized saucepan. Add freekeh and a couple of pinches of salt. Return to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer covered until water is absorbed and grains are tender, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat, drain any excess liquid, let stand covered for 5 minutes, and then fluff with fork. Stir chickpeas, apricots, and garlic into pan. In small bowl, whisk together 2 tsp (10 mL) oil, lemon juice, cumin, and black pepper. Toss dressing with freekeh mixture.
To roast carrots, preheat oven to 425 F (220 C) and place rimmed baking sheet in oven as it preheats. Toss carrots with 2 tsp (10 mL) oil and salt. Spread out carrots on hot baking sheet and roast for 30 minutes, or until carrots are easily pierced with a fork near the top of their stems. If needed, remove any carrots from oven that have finished cooking before others.
Heat dry skillet over medium heat. Add pistachios and heat until fragrant and darkened, shaking the pan often, about 3 minutes. Let cool and then roughly chop. Whisk together yogurt, zau2019atar, and pinch of salt.
To assemble the dish, pour freekeh mixture onto large serving platter. Arrange roasted carrots in single layer over mixture. Drizzle yogurt sauce over top, then sprinkle on pistachios and parsley.
With citrus season upon us, what could be better than a classic fennel and orange salad? It’s light and refreshing, a perfect balance to heavier holiday meals, with a boost of vitamin C to boot. This version adds delicious crunchy cabbage and the bright juiciness of pomegranate. Perfect for sharing, this salad comes together quickly, and the flavour combination is sure to wow at any party you bring it to. Orange supreme To segment or “supreme” the orange, slice top and bottom off the orange so you have a flat surface to work with. With the flat edge on the cutting board, run your knife around the orange, removing skin in sections from top to bottom. Once all the skin is removed, hold the orange in your hand and carefully insert your knife along each section, cutting through to centre to remove each piece, avoiding the pithy sheath. When all the segments have been removed, squeeze what remains of the orange over bowl to extract all of the juice. If you’re not using segments immediately, keep them in the juice so they stay fresh and moist.
Rich, tasty crab, sweet apple, licorice-scented tarragon, and a touch of lemon make these stuffed endives a classy crowd pleaser. The filling is easily prepared in advance and can be chilled until ready to serve, but this dish also comes together quickly enough to be done right before stuffing into leaves. Keeping your boats upright If you want the endive boats to sit neatly on the dish or platter without tipping, you can make a small slice at the bottom of each leaf before filling to give it a flat surface to rest on. Just make sure not to penetrate too deeply into the wall of the leaf.
Many of us have discovered the magic of roasting Brussels sprouts to completely transform them, imparting rich, nutty flavour. Skewered on toothpicks, they’re perfect for a party appetizer. When drizzled with pomegranate molasses and paired with a smoky red pepper hummus dip assembled from cupboard ingredients, they’re next level—all while being an absolute cinch to put together. Prepping the sprouts If you’ve spent hours in the past peeling and trimming sprouts, you’ll love this simple tip to make things go faster. Simply trim the bottom end and then make a slice straight down the middle of each sprout. Any excess outer leaves will fall off, saving you the fiddly job of peeling them.
This hearty version of traditional sloppy joes has a tidy helping of sleep-aiding dietary fibre, thanks to its payload of smoky lentils. Swapping out the doughy bun for sweet bell pepper ups the nutritional ante and visual appeal. It’s also superb as leftovers. Smoke and fire Chipotle peppers are ripened red jalapeno chiles that have been smoked and dried. In stores, they’re typically sold in a rich, smoky flavoured adobo sauce. They add fiery, complex flavour to sauces used for pasta dishes, tacos, and any version of sloppy joes.