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Aubergine Carrot Couscous – Bazaar Review & Giveaway

Serving platter with aubergine carrot couscous.

At last we have the long awaited (by me at least) vegetarian cookbook from Sabrina Ghayour. Bazaar: vibrant vegetarian recipes is pretty much what you’d expect from the title. It’s packed with mostly Middle Eastern inspired recipes from a talented flavour enthusiast. Flick through the pages and you’ll find dishes both vibrant and exciting. Read on to learn more about the book along with a recipe for roasted aubergine carrot couscous. Oh, and there’s a giveaway too.

Sabrina Ghayour

Sabrina is a British-Iranian chef and has been cooking and writing about Persian and Middle Eastern food for many years. She already has three bestselling cookbooks: Persiana, Sirocco and Feasts. Bazaar is her fourth. Before ever she published her first book in 2014, I was asking her for vegetarian recipes. It’ may have taken five years, but now we have some. And what a fabulous book it is, dedicated to cooking vegetables in an interesting and flavoursome way. It was worth the wait.

Bazaar

The subtitle, vibrant vegetarian recipes, says it all really. Bazaar is one beautiful book full of mouthwatering recipes that are jam packed with flavour. The title comes from the ancient Persian word for market. For me, this instantly conjures up a bustling square filled with all sorts of wonderful vegetables, colours and textures. I remember the amazing fruit and vegetable markets back in Alexandria and get excited by the very thought.

Bazaar: vibrant vegetarian recipes. A Middle Easter inspired cookbook by Sabrina Ghayour

Although there are a few vegan recipes in the book, these are incidental. There’s plenty of cheese, butter and yoghurt to be had. The book is very much aimed at those who want to eat less meat and existing vegetarians who want to widen their repertoire. Having said that, I chose to try a vegan recipe for this post: roasted aubergine carrot couscous. Aubergines are a favoured ingredient in the book and star in recipes such as aubergines in tomato & tamarind sauce and aubergine & caramelised kuku. I’m a recent convert to aubergines, or eggplants as they’re also known, so I was delighted to get a few more ideas on how to cook this beautiful glossy vegetable.

Book Chapters

The book begins with a chapter on my favourite way of eating, Light Bites & Sharing Plates. Carrot, halloumi & dill balls has my name written all over them. I really must see if I can wangle a dinner invite from Sabrina. Now wouldn’t that be something? Although recipes are mostly inspired by the Middle East, Sabrina’s is obviously influenced by her Britishness too. This comes out in recipes such as feta & spring onion-stuffed potato skins and potato crisps with spiced salt & lime.

Charred sweetcorn salad from the cookbook Bazaar

There’s a whole chapter dedicated to Eggs & Dairy. I was excited to see that one of my favourite cheeses, halloumi, plays a starring role. I suspect I’m not alone in this. Yes, those grilled halloumi flatbreads with preserved lemon & barberry salsa will be appearing on my table in the not too distant future. Kuku is an Iranian egg dish similar to an Italian frittata. There are two kuku recipes in this chapter. The one I found particularly interesting was for kale & cabbage kuku with pine nuts. Again, you get a fusion of flavours to excite the palate. 

Other chapters cover: Soups & Bowl Comfort, Pies, Breads & Pastries, Salads for all Seasons, Moreish Mains, Store-Cupboard Sustenance, Spectacular Sides and Sweet Treats. Soups are a staple fare for us, so I was delighted to see a really hearty recipe for rice & vegetable aash with puy lentils. Aash is a Persian staple, which Sabrina says is “the best comfort food on a cold day and a virtuous enough to be the perfect meal all year round”. Other recipes that jumped out at me were: blackberry, beetroot & za’atar goats’ cheese salad, harissa black bean ragout and roast vegetable bastilla, which is a Moroccan pastry pie.

What I particularly liked about the book

Bazaar is very much my sort of book. I loved leafing through the recipes, reading the ingredients and gazing at the gorgeous photos. Readers will find plenty of inspiration and some surprises. I was not expecting beetroot halva tart for example. What fun. Oh, how I wish CT didn’t have an aversion to beetroot.

The recipes are big hearted, both in style and substance. They’re varied, colourful and have plenty of bold flavours. Everything seems very doable which is home cooking at its best. I want to eat every single recipe in the book and I want to try cooking most of them too.

Sweet potato & lime soup recipe from the cookbook Bazaar.

Middle Eastern food is one of my favourite cuisines. But many of Sabrina’s recipes are a fusion of flavours and foods, combining influences from Persia, the Middle East, The East and dear old Britain. This makes the recipes particularly exciting. How about a classic British macaroni cheese getting a face lift as a feta, pul biber & oregano macaroni bake? It sounds good to me.

Oh, I nearly forgot to mention the embedded bookmark. I do like a cookbook that comes with a ribbon to mark your place. It should be compulsory to have at least one, three would be even better. This bookmark in a stylish yellow which matches the yellow on the front cover.

What I think could be improved on

Really, I don’t have much to say on how this book could be improved. It is perhaps a bit London centric. The ingredients are mostly ones that are easy to get hold of. However, there are a few that  come up in several of the recipes that I suspect are hard to source outside of London and the big cities. I have no idea where to buy pul biber chilli flakes, for example. A page at the back of the book with some advice on sourcing the less common ingredients would help.

I’ve only made one recipe so far. Based on that recipe, I would say that Bazaar is best suited to those who are looking for inspiration rather than to novice cooks. I needed to add twice the amount of water stated in the recipe. That wasn’t an issue for me, but it might well be for someone who hasn’t cooked with couscous before.

Publisher Details

Bazaar: vibrant vegetarian recipes / Sabrina Ghayour. Published by Mitchell Beazley in hardback with an RRP of £26. ISBN – 9781784725174.

Roasted Aubergine Carrot Couscous

Roasted aubergine carrot couscous is a nice simple recipe that requires relatively little effort to prepare. I do like these sorts of recipes. The aubergine and carrots are roasted in the oven, whilst the remaining ingredients gently steam in a pan. It’s then just a case of combining the two and adding a few herbs and seasoning.

The recipe calls for dill. I couldn’t find any anywhere. We used to grow it down on the plot and oh, how I miss it. Now we’re getting our new garden into shape, I think I’ll try growing some again next year. I reckon dill would be a lovely addition to the roasted aubergine carrot couscous, but I had to make do with double quantities of parsley instead.

Serving platter with aubergine carrot couscous.

In the end, I made only half of the recipe. It was more than enough to feed two of us for dinner. I only had one aubergine, but it was a large (ish) one, so I used more carrots than the recipe stated and roasted them both in the same tray. Naughtily, I added a leek to the roasting veg. We had one lurking in the veg rack, which I’d have had to throw away if it wasn’t used immediately. As you know, I can’t bear waste. I also only used half a preserved lemon as that was all I had. The flavour still came through loud and clear though, so I was happy with that amount.

There was plenty there to fill us up and enough for CT to take to work the next day in a lunchbox. He said it was nearly as good cold as it was hot the previous night.

Stay in Touch

Thanks for visiting Tin and Thyme. If you get hold of Bazaar* or try this recipe for aubergine carrot couscous, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below or via social media. Do share photos on your preferred social media site and use the hashtag #tinandthyme, so I can spot them. For further book reviews, follow me on TwitterFacebook, Instagram or Pinterest.

Aubergine Carrot Couscous. PIN IT.

Serving platter with aubergine carrot couscous with a written description above.

Roasted Aubergine Carrot Couscous – The Recipe

Serving platter with aubergine carrot couscous.
Print Pin
4.67 from 6 votes

Roasted Aubergine & Carrot Couscous with Preserved Lemon

This spicy couscous dish is simple to make and requires little effort. It's ideal for a mid-week supper. Its also good cold the next day and is perfect for lunchboxes.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Middle Eastern
Keyword: aubergine, carrots, couscous, preserved lemons
Servings: 6 people

Ingredients

  • 4 aubergines - diced into 2.5 cm cubes
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 small carrots - cut into batons
  • 2 tsp dried wild oregano
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 300 g couscous
  • 2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 fat garlic cloves - crushed
  • 450 ml hot water I used twice this amount
  • 4-5 preserved lemons - finely chopped
  • 1 small packet dill (30g) - finely chopped
  • 1 small packed parsley (30g) - finely chopped
  • Maldon sea salt flakes
  • freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 220℃, 200℃, Gas Mark 7. Line a large baking tray with baking paper, plus a smaller one.
  • Place the aubergines into the largest tray. Season with pepper and drizzle over a generous amount of olive oil. Place the tray on a higher oven shelf. Add the carrots to the smaller tray and season with salt, pepper and the oregano. Place on a lower shelf in the oven. Roast both for 25-30 minutes. The aubergine should be cooked through and brown and the carrots cooked and charred around the edges.
  • Place the cumin seeds in a large saucepan with a tight fitting lid. Toast the them over a medium-high heat for 1 minute - without the lid. Add the couscous and allow to toast briefly. Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the other spices, garlic, hot water, salt and pepper. Cover and set aside for 8-10 minutes to allow the grains to absorb the liquid.
  • Once the liquid has been absorbed, use a fork to carefully fluff up the couscous. Add the roasted veg, the preserved lemon and herbs, then fold carefully together. Return to the heat briefly, if needed, and serve hot.

Notes

As I only made half the amount, I found everything fitted into my largest baking tray, so I roasted the aubergines and carrots together.

Sharing

I’m sharing this recipe for roasted aubergine carrot couscous with A Strong Coffee for #CookBlogShare.

Bazaar Giveaway

Octopus Books is offering one Tin and Thyme reader a copy of Bazaar: vibrant vegetarian recipes. To be in with a chance of winning, please fill in the Gleam widget below. You will need to leave a comment on this post, answering the question, which then gives you additional chances to enter if you so wish. Gleam will pick a winner at random from the entries received. If you are commenting anonymously, please give me some way of identifying you as I will be verifying the validity of entries. Any automated entries will be disqualified. 

This giveaway is only open to those with a UK postal address. Winners will need to respond within 5 days of being contacted. Failure to do this may result in another winner being picked. Leaving your details gives permission for them to be passed on to Octopus books should you be a winner in this giveaway.

 
Prizes are offered and provided by Octopus Books and Tin and Thyme accepts no responsibility for the acts or defaults of said third party. Tin and Thyme reserves the right to cancel or amend the giveaway and these terms and conditions without notice.
 
Closing date is Saturday 22 June 2019
 
Do take a look at the Tin and Thyme giveaways page to see if there’s anything else you’d like to enter.
 

Bazaar Cookbook

 
Thanks to Octopus Books for the copy of Bazaar: Vibrant Vegetarian Recipes which they sent me to review. I was not expected to write a positive review and all opinions are, as always, my own. This post contains affiliate links which are marked with an *. If you buy through a link, it won’t cost you any more, but I’ll get a small commission. Thanks to my readers for supporting the brands and organisations that help to keep Tin and Thyme blithe and blogging.

72 Comments

  1. Vicky

    22nd May 2019 at 1:50 pm

    Houmous, it’s quick to prepare and very tasty

    Reply
    • Choclette

      22nd May 2019 at 6:47 pm

      Hummus really is the bees knees isn’t it? It’s delicious in it’s own right and goes well with so many other foods.

      Reply
  2. Maxine G

    22nd May 2019 at 3:22 pm

    You can’t beat a good meze with Baba Ganoush, Hummous, Falafel and home made Manoushe flatbreads – flavoursome, healthy and most of all, it is compulsory to go back for seconds, and thirds, and …

    Reply
    • Sarah Turpitt

      22nd May 2019 at 6:12 pm

      I haven’t had much experience at cooking or eating Middle Eastern vegetarian food but I can’t wait to get started with this recipe. I have recently converted to a vegetable based diet and the flavours and textures delivered in Middle Eastern food excite me. I have been enjoying a wonderful braised spiced rice with roasted aubergine recipe given to me recently. Thanks for the comprehensive review, I’m delighted to come across your blog, I will be following avidly!

      Reply
      • Choclette

        22nd May 2019 at 6:46 pm

        Thanks Sarah. Middle Eastern food is wonderful for vegetarians and vegans. It has so many interesting flavours and ingredients.

        Reply
    • Choclette

      22nd May 2019 at 6:46 pm

      Haha, I’m with you all the way on meze – love it.

      Reply
  3. angiesrecipes

    22nd May 2019 at 6:58 pm

    It looks really tasty and the book sounds really a keeper!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      23rd May 2019 at 7:20 am

      Yes, it’s a good recipe and so easy to make. I shall definitely be keeping the book.

      Reply
  4. Jane Willis

    23rd May 2019 at 5:55 am

    I love Middle Eastern food, veggie friendly or not. We’ve been known to go out for a Lebanese meal and not realise until we were on the way home that neither of us had ordered any meat dishes, there’s so much variety in the non-meat ones. For preparing at home, though, it has to be hummus, it’s so quick and easy and there’s always a tin of chickpeas in the cupboard so it feels like a free meal because I don’t have to shop for it.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      23rd May 2019 at 7:19 am

      Middle Eastern food is really good for vegetarians, especially if you have a meze style spread. But I have to agree hummus is one of the best.

      Reply
  5. Maya Russell

    23rd May 2019 at 6:29 am

    I like couscous salad with just herbs and spices and with perhaps sultanas thrown in.

    Reply
  6. Corina Blum

    23rd May 2019 at 10:41 am

    I love Middle Eastern recipes and I tend to make hummus a lot and falafels and various variations of them. I’ve got one book already by Sabrina Ghayour and love the recipes in it!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      23rd May 2019 at 7:40 pm

      Ooh, which one of Sabrina’s books do you have? I’ve heard a lot about her first one Persiana. Hummus and falafel are both staples with us too.

      Reply
  7. Donna Loxton

    23rd May 2019 at 6:54 pm

    I like hummus as it’s easy to prepare and you can totally jazz it up with different flavours.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      23rd May 2019 at 7:42 pm

      Hummus is wonderful stuff for sure and as you say, quite versatile.

      Reply
  8. Kim M

    23rd May 2019 at 7:44 pm

    Like aubergine – would like to find a way of cooking it without a lot of oil though x

    Reply
  9. Margaret Clarkson

    23rd May 2019 at 10:35 pm

    Flatbreads served with dips such as Hummus and aubergine dip because they are tasty and simple to prepare.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      24th May 2019 at 7:32 am

      Yes, simple is fab. Especially if you have a really good flatbread.

      Reply
  10. Ritchie Dee

    23rd May 2019 at 11:24 pm

    My favourite Middle Eastern food has to be falafel – the proper home made ones not the dry ready made ones from the supermarket

    Reply
    • Choclette

      24th May 2019 at 7:31 am

      Or even better, the proper deep-fried ones found on street corners throughout the Middle East.

      Reply
  11. claire blakeley

    24th May 2019 at 12:06 am

    These recipes look amazing!

    Reply
  12. Katherine Hackworthy

    24th May 2019 at 10:16 am

    I love Persian spiced lentils with roasted aubergine. I make it all the time and even my kids devour it!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      24th May 2019 at 5:54 pm

      That sounds delicious indeed Kate. Lentils are wonderful things and I’m beginning to find that so are aubergines.

      Reply
  13. Solange

    24th May 2019 at 6:56 pm

    Baba Ganoush. If you’ve never had it before, then you’re in for a treat! It’s basically a dip made from cooked aubergine mixed with tahini, olive oil and a variety of seasonings. The end product is a deliciously rich, smoky dip that’s incredibly creamy and moreish.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      24th May 2019 at 8:12 pm

      Hehe, I used to hate baba ganoush. But now I’m had an aubergine epiphany, I guess I ought to try it again.

      Reply
  14. pete c

    24th May 2019 at 11:13 pm

    cous cous as as well as being filling it`s a very flexible ingredient in terms of cooking and what to pair it with

    Reply
    • Choclette

      26th May 2019 at 10:21 am

      And so easy to prepare too. Always a plus in my book.

      Reply
  15. Fiona jk42

    24th May 2019 at 11:22 pm

    I love Ful, especially with freshly-baked flat breads. My preference is for the Egyptian recipe which has quite a lot of cumin, but I also like other versions as well.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      26th May 2019 at 10:20 am

      I’ve been thinking for I while that it’s about time I put up a recipe for Egyptian ful mesdames on the blog. And you’re so right Egyptians do love their cumin.

      Reply
  16. lynn neal

    25th May 2019 at 9:11 pm

    Falafel served with pitta bread and hummus is a delicious meal!

    Reply
  17. Louise

    26th May 2019 at 2:03 pm

    This looks absolutely delicious. I keep meaning to make some couscous to have with salads now the weather is getting warmer. Thanks for sharing #cookblogshare

    Reply
    • Choclette

      26th May 2019 at 5:54 pm

      Hooray for salad weather and couscous sounds like a lovely accompaniment.

      Reply
  18. Keith Hunt

    27th May 2019 at 12:13 am

    Falafel

    Reply
  19. Claire woods

    27th May 2019 at 10:15 am

    Lemon & Coriander Falafel

    Reply
  20. Hayley Lynch

    28th May 2019 at 8:34 am

    I love cous cous with spices and roasted vegetabes

    Reply
    • Choclette

      1st June 2019 at 12:18 pm

      It sounds like this aubergine carrot couscous might just be for you then Hayley.

      Reply
  21. Balvinder

    30th May 2019 at 1:55 am

    This dish really sounds delightful! Love middle eastern recipes!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      1st June 2019 at 12:16 pm

      Middle Eastern cuisine is a firm favourite with me. It’s full of flavour and really quite versatile.

      Reply
  22. Ruth Harwood

    2nd June 2019 at 10:50 am

    Always been a big fan of mousakka!

    Reply
  23. janine atkin

    3rd June 2019 at 8:42 pm

    i havent eaten many Middle Eastern vegetarian food but would like to try some reciepes

    Reply
  24. Margaret GALLAGHER

    6th June 2019 at 10:02 pm

    Really can’t say I’ve cooked many of these dishes – made moussaka – beautiful recipes to try

    Reply
  25. shaheen

    9th June 2019 at 5:45 pm

    I am always up for a new vegetarian or vegan cookbook, esp. one that promises world flavours.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      10th June 2019 at 7:58 am

      Good ones are very hard to resist. The problem is in finding room to put them.

      Reply
  26. ADEINNE TONNER

    10th June 2019 at 4:37 pm

    For me it personally has to be flatbread it tastes so good especially with some humus on it and i love eating it so much!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      10th June 2019 at 5:56 pm

      Oh, nice one. Good flatbread is so delicious.

      Reply
  27. Lyn Geddes

    11th June 2019 at 3:23 pm

    I love home made hummus with a squeeze of lemon with flatbread and Greek salad

    Reply
  28. Elizabeth Cooke

    16th June 2019 at 10:44 am

    Flatbreads with exciting dips like Baba ganoush and hummus are always delicious!

    Reply
  29. Melissa Lee

    16th June 2019 at 5:42 pm

    I once made a Persian rice cake which was absolutely delicious. I love it because it’s like a big savoury cake that you can slice up.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      16th June 2019 at 6:10 pm

      That sounds wonderful. I love the tahdig you get with Persian rice.

      Reply
  30. Jan H

    17th June 2019 at 1:14 pm

    I love hummus – it can be plain and simple or jazzed up with spices or peppers – depending on your mood.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      17th June 2019 at 2:30 pm

      Hummus sure is wonderful stuff. We usually have a pot in the fridge.

      Reply
  31. Tracey Parker

    17th June 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Not Middle eastern but my favourite veggie dish is butternut squash curry, it is the first dish where I can honestly say I don’t mins meat!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      19th June 2019 at 4:33 pm

      Oh, I’m with you on squash curry. I fell in love with it when CT first made it for me many many years ago!

      Reply
  32. Victoria Prince

    19th June 2019 at 8:13 pm

    Pita bread! I actually eat it every day, I’m a bit obsessed lol because it’s so versatile – you can stuff it with just about anything you can think of (including hummus…) or dip it in things (including hummus…) and it’s delicious warm, cold, toasted….

    Reply
  33. Louise Woodhatch

    21st June 2019 at 1:49 am

    My dad lives in the middle east – as a veggie it’s so easy to eat there! I love aubergine, it has such a nice texture in meat-free dishes. I also love a good quality extra virgin olive oil – they use that so much in cooking and dips and you can really taste the difference!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      23rd June 2019 at 11:10 am

      There’s nothing quite like being in the Middle East to experience the food. It’s so very good, especially when prepared by a home cook.

      Reply
  34. Angela Kelly

    21st June 2019 at 1:27 pm

    I love hummus because you can add so many different ingredients to it so it never becomes boring.

    Reply
  35. Wiebke Howey

    21st June 2019 at 7:41 pm

    I love a nice mezze spread with homemade flatbread and lots of dips and salads. My favourite vegetable is aubergine so middle eastern food is perfect.

    Reply
  36. Francesca H

    21st June 2019 at 9:22 pm

    Houmous and chargrilled spiced veg, with lots of of salad all crammed into a flatbread – amazing!!

    Reply
  37. Darren Bourne

    22nd June 2019 at 12:17 am

    Falafel, we had them for dinner earlier.

    Reply
  38. Sarah

    22nd June 2019 at 4:31 am

    Aash, the thick Persian soups, are the most exciting and inspiring veggie friendly Middle Eastern food I have read about recently. Some use unexpected or exotic flavours such as pomegranate, but they all offer so many ways to use health giving ingredients such as pulses, grains, herbs, spices and vegetables. Soups and stews are great for busy lives and these ones are unusual, delicious and good for you!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      23rd June 2019 at 11:05 am

      I saw one of those stews on Nigel Slater’s recent Middle Eastern series on the BBC. It looks very inviting indeed.

      Reply
  39. CARA-JANE HUNTER

    22nd June 2019 at 6:03 am

    I’m a massive fan of hummous. There’s loads of great veggie middle Eastern food, mmmmm!

    Reply
  40. A.E. ADKINS

    22nd June 2019 at 1:23 pm

    Falafel and flatbreads with Baba Ganoush and hummus are my favs. Still a bit hit or miss whether the homemade versions are 100% successful

    Reply
  41. Sheila Reeves

    22nd June 2019 at 1:25 pm

    I love couscous – so many things you can do with it and can be made in moments – great when you have unexpected guests

    Reply
  42. Sheri Darby

    22nd June 2019 at 3:40 pm

    Felafel, I love it, freshly cooked and crispy on the outside. So delicious

    Reply
  43. Theresa THomas

    22nd June 2019 at 4:38 pm

    I like couscous salad with just spices, aubergine and with sultanas thrown in.

    Reply
  44. Jen oconnell

    22nd June 2019 at 6:20 pm

    I love Middle Eastern food. My fave has to be hummus, flatbread and falafel

    Reply
  45. Meryl Thomas

    22nd June 2019 at 7:38 pm

    I really like Lebanese food – it lends itself really well to vegetarianism and it is not too hot and spicy.

    Reply
  46. Ursula K

    22nd June 2019 at 8:00 pm

    You can never go wrong with (home-made) Hummous and Falafel, I know that’s not the traditional way but I could eat just those two without anything else!

    Reply
  47. Adrian Bold

    22nd June 2019 at 9:53 pm

    I love a good salad, so one of my favourites is a Fattoush salad. Lots of options to change this up with whatever you have in the fridge.

    Reply
  48. Diane Duggan

    22nd June 2019 at 11:00 pm

    Falafel, because its delicious and easy to prepare and cook

    Reply

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