Go into any restaurant in Palestine, any fast food place, any falafel or shawarma shack and you will find deep-fried vegetables; carrots, potatoes, cauliflower, aubergines, courgettes. For me the courgette and cauliflower are the kings of these. I as once staying at a hotel in Nablus while supporting local farmers to convert to organic farming and for breakfast at this hotel they were serving huge trays of these deep-fried vegetables. I mean, the farmers were lucky to see me at all that day. Luckily I was heavily pregnant with my second son Rupert at the time so I was able to blame my aubergine belly on the baby.
We often make these for lunch and serve with a simple salad (tomato, salt, olive oil), the below delicious dip, olives and wraps. We basically make little sandwich wraps to scoff. These are also great as elegant dippers served with wine at a party or as part of a bigger spread- brunch being my favourite of those. They will disappear first so make sure you get your hands on them.
Half head of cauliflower
Enough vegetable oil to deep fry
Good quality sea salt
for the dip
500g natural yoghurt
2 tbsp tahini
Handful of parsley
Handful of mint
Handful of dill
1 garlic clove
Good pinch of good sea salt
Get all your herbs and garlic cloves on a chopping board and chop them all together until they are fine.
Mix the yoghurt, tahini, salt, herb and garlic mixture together and put in a nice bowl to serve alongside the dippers.
Cube the aubergine to about 2.5×2.5cm and separate the cauliflower into smallish florets.
First deep fry all the cauliflower for about 3 minutes until it is golden and then transfer to a kitchen paper lined tray. Then do the same for the aubergine.
Serve while hot along with the dip, the salad and some warmed wraps.
Cheat: if you are short on time or are making a lot of dishes, you can coat the vegetables in olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and put in the oven on 190c for 20 minutes. Its not as tasty as this method but its still good.