This salad is not cute. You don’t need to tell it; it’s sensitive about these things. But like any wallflower about to be revealed as the babe it always was in a teen movie, it’s going to prove your skepticism unwarranted when you stand in the kitchen and eat an entire sheet pan of crispy vegetables. I cannot stop making it. And I cannot stop finishing the whole thing when I do. It’s been like this since I first made it in December, which means I’m about 7 weeks overdue to share it here. I’d spotted a roasted cabbage salad on one of Justine Snack’s delicious Reels. I’ve made roasted cabbage wedge salads, but I loved that this was already in bite-sized pieces and a tahini dressing is perfection here. In my kitchen, I used a less sweet, more lemony tahini dressing with garlic that’s my go-to and added bite-sized pieces cauliflower for more bulk.
There are three key things to keep in mind here. The first is char: Do not be afraid to take these vegetables to the edge of burnt. Both cauliflower and cabbage taste amazing with very dark edges; don’t skimp on them. The second is speed: The moment you mix the vegetables with the dressing, it will begin to soften. It’s still crazy good but the magical moment is when it just begins to soften and each bite is both crackly and tender. The third is yield. This doesn’t make a lot, in the end, because the vegetables shrink so much when they cook. But you’re still limited to what you can fit on a sheet pan. That works out to one generous or two moderate portions. You’ll likely lop off part of your cabbage and cauliflower and wrap the rest up in the fridge for another day, but since this is so good, that day will probably be tomorrow.
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2 years ago: Perfect Vegetable Lasagna
3 year ago: Bodega-Style Egg and Cheese Sandwich and Chocolate Puddle Cakes
4 years ago: Slow-Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Korean-Braised Short Ribs
5 years ago: Small-Batch Tiramisu
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14 years ago: Seven-Yolk Pasta Dough and Best Chocolate Pudding
15 years ago: For Beaming, Bewitching Breads
Crispy Cabbage and Cauliflower Salad
- 1/2 pound savoy cabbage (from half a small head)
- 1/2 pound cauliflower (from half a small head)
- Olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper and/or red pepper flakes
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons well-stirred tahini
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Water, as needed
- Harissa*, to taste
Roast for 10 minutes, then remove the pan from the oven just long enough to toss everything around so it colors evenly. Return to the oven for 5 minutes, toss again, and 5 final minutes if needed. Don’t be afraid to get some serious char on the vegetables. They will taste good, not burnt.
Meanwhile, make the dressing in a large bowl. Whisk garlic, lemon, tahini, and olive oil together, then whisk in water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until it reaches a thick dressing consistency — I rarely need more than 2 tablespoons. Season well with salt and black pepper, or red pepper flakes. For more heat, you can add harissa directly to the dressing to taste, but I love having it on the side of my plate in a dollop.
As soon as the vegetables are crispy, charred, and ready, add them to the bowl with the dressing, toss to coat, and eat right away.