The book celebrates vegetarian and plant-based Middle Eastern dishes. British-Iranian chef Sabrina has recently moved to Yorkshire after being inspired by the region's produce, and will be teaching courses at the new cookery school at the Grand Hotel in York.
Grilled halloumi flatbreads with preserved lemon and barberry salsa
This is my version of a taco, but with all the punch and vibrancy you would associate with Middle Eastern flavours. You can substitute the halloumi for Indian paneer or tofu. The flatbreads alone are incredibly moreish – you may never buy shop-bought flatbreads again!
Ingredients2 x 250g blocks halloumi cheese2 tablespoons Greek-style yoghurt5cm piece of fresh turmeric, peeled and finely grated1 garlic clove, crushedfinely grated zest of 1 unwaxed limegood squeeze of lime juicevegetable oilpul biber chilli flakes, to garnishMaldon sea salt flakes and black pepperFor the flatbreads30g unsalted butter, melted175g plain flour100ml semi-skimmed milk2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper2 teaspoons garlic granules1 tablespoon olive oilFor the salsaSmall packet (about 15g) of fresh dill, roughly chopped
4 preserved lemons, deseeded and very finely chopped1 tablespoon dried barberries1 avocado, peeled, stoned and roughly diced2 teaspoons Nigella seedsFor the harissa yogurt250g Greek-style yogurt1 heaped tablespoon rose harissa
MethodCut each block of halloumi into four thick, equal slices. Put the yoghurt, grated turmeric, crushed garlic and lime zest into a bowl, add the lime juice and mix well. Season with salt and pepper. Leave the halloumi slices to marinate while you’re making the flatbreads.Put all the flatbread ingredients, except the oil, into a mixing bowl and mix until a firm dough has formed. Wrap the dough in clingfilm and leave to rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.To make the salsa, mix the ingredients together in a small bowl, season with salt and pepper and set aside. To make the harissa yoghurt, mix the ingredients together in another bowl, season with salt and pepper, and chill until ready to serve.When you’re ready to cook the flatbreads, preheat a large frying pan over a medium heat. Divide the dough into four equal portions and roll out each piece into a thin round, about 25cm in diameter. Brush the hot pan with olive oil and cook the flatbreads, one at a time, for about 45-60 seconds on each side, or until lightly browned.In the same frying pan, heat a drizzle of vegetable oil over a medium-high heat. Add the marinated halloumi slices and fry for about one minute on each side, or until nicely browned.Divide the halloumi between the flatbreads and dollop a generous amount of the harissa yoghurt on top. Add the salsa and then sprinkle over some pul biber. Roll up and serve immediately.
Sumac, tomato and garlic toasts with labneh
I’m obsessed with tomatoes on toast either in the Spanish style of pan con tomate or the Italian bruschetta. I used to make mini versions of these for clients as canapés, which proved so popular that I was asked to serve them as starters rather than finger food. The addition of sumac gives the tomatoes a citrusy note, and I never need an excuse to add coriander to tomatoes. They are incredibly moreish and I am happy to eat several of these as a meal by themselves.
MAKES 12Ingredients1 large ciabatta, cut into 12 slices1 large or 2 small garlic cloves, peeled4 large, ripe vine tomatoes, very finely choppedA small red onion, very finely chopped2 teaspoons sumac, plus extra to garnishA small packet (about 15g) of fresh coriander, finely chopped (reserve some for garnish)olive oil4 heaped tablespoons labneh or thickGreek yoghurtMaldon sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper
MethodChargrill the bread in a griddle pan on both sides or use a toaster. Lightly rub the surface of each slice with the raw garlic.Mix the tomatoes, onion, sumac and coriander in a bowl. Add a drizzle of olive oil and season well with salt and pepper.Divide the tomato mixture between the toasts, spreading it across the surface of each piece. Top each with a teaspoon of labneh or yogurt and garnish each with a little pinch of sumac, the reserved coriander and a drizzle of olive oil. Serve immediately.
Turmeric, spinach and sweet potato frittersThere are very few things that aren’t improved by frying, and that includes vegetables – especially sweet potatoes. Turmeric is underrated as a spice, but I like it to be a main player in my cooking, just as long as it is not too overpowering and strikes the perfect balance with the other ingredients in a recipe. Eat these fritters with a few dipping sauces on the side – sweet chilli sauce is my personal favourite pairing.
MAKES APPROXIMATELY 20Ingredients300g sweet potato, peeled and coarsely grated150g baby spinach leaves, finely chopped3 teaspoons turmeric1 teaspoon chilli flakes3 large eggs100g plain flour1 teaspoon baking powder vegetable oil, for fryingMaldon sea salt flakes and freshly groundblack peppersweet chilli sauce, to serve
MethodPut the sweet potato, spinach, turmeric, chilli flakes, eggs, flour and baking powder into a mixing bowl and mix well. Season generously with salt and pepper, then allow the batter to rest for 15 minutes.Pour enough vegetable oil into a large, deep frying pan or saucepan to fill to a depth of about 5cm. Heat the oil over a medium-high heat and bring to frying temperature (add a pinch of mixture: if it sizzles immediately, the oil is hot enough). Line a plate with a double layer of kitchen paper. When the oil is ready, stir the batter well. Using 2 dessertspoons, form quenelles of the mixture: scoop up the mixture with one spoon and use the other to press down and shape it. Lower the quenelles carefully into the hot oil and fry in batches, six at a time – it is important not to overcrowd the pan or the temperature of the oil will drop and your fritters will not be crisp. Fry the fritters for one minute, then turn them over and fry for another minute or so, or until nicely browned all over. Remove the fritters from the oil using a slotted spoon and transfer to the paper-lined plate to drain. Serve hot with sweet chilli sauce.