The Veggie Ottolenghi Uses As A Steak Swap — And It’s Not Cauliflower

October 16, 2020 — 20:18 PM Share on:

You’ve heard of, and maybe even had, a cauliflower steak—but the whole veggie swaps for meats don’t stop there. This recipe, from iconic chef Yotam Ottoleghi‘s new plant-based cooking tome Ottolenghi Flavor, utilizes a lesser-known fall vegetable as the core of this vegan main dish.

Written together with Ixta Belfrage, a recipe developer at Ottolenghi Test Kitchen, the book is chock-full of dinner-party-worthy vegan recipes like these rutabaga steaks. Rutabaga, if you’re not familiar, is a vegetable similar to a turnip that’s generally in season from October to March. Like other root vegetables, they are most often eaten roasted or even in a mash, but this preparation opts for the former.

Because its flavor is actually a bit more mild than a turnip, especially when roasted, rutabagas are an ideal candidate for a spice-heavy recipe—something Ottolenghi and Belfrage take full advantage of with the curry crust they’ve created here. It’s made up largely of garlic, cayenne, turmeric, and fenugreek seeds, which have a powerful flavor reminiscent of maple but slightly more bitter and are known to provide health benefits.

While we may not be having dinner parties at the moment, we’ll be bookmarking this showstopper for when we can again—and until then, we may just have to make this for ourselves on Saturday night.

Curry-Crusted Rutabaga Steaks

Serves 4 as a main


  • 4½ tsp. fenugreek seeds
  • 6 small garlic cloves, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1½ tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1½ tsp. ground turmeric
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 2 tbsp. lime juice
  • ⅓ cup olive oil
  • ¾ tsp. table salt
  • 2 to 3 rutabagas, peeled and cut crosswise into eight 1¼-inch-/3-cm-thick steaks
  • 3 to 4 ruby grapefruits
  • 1 to 2 shallots, finely sliced on a mandoline, if you have one, or by hand
  • 2 red chilies, finely sliced into rounds
  • 1 cup mint leaves
  • ½ cup cilantro leaves
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. lime juice
  • Table salt
  • ½ cup crème fraîche (or coconut yogurt)
  • 2 limes, cut into wedges


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F/180°C fan. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. For the marinade: In a spice grinder or the bowl of a small food processor, combine the fenugreek seeds, garlic, cayenne, turmeric, sugar, lime juice, olive oil, and salt and blitz to a paste, scraping the sides as you go if necessary. Put 2 tsp. of the marinade into a small serving bowl and set aside.
  3. Put the remaining marinade into a large bowl with the rutabaga steaks and mix well to coat all sides (this is easiest with gloved hands). Place the steaks, spaced apart, on the prepared baking sheet. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and roast for 1 hour and 20 minutes. Remove the foil, turn the oven to the broil setting, and broil for 3 to 4 minutes, until the rutabaga is cooked through and the marinade has turned into a golden-brown crust.
  4. For the salad: When the rutabaga is nearly cooked, cut the grapefruits into thin wedges by removing the skin and the white pith, then release the segments by cutting in between the white membrane, discarding any seeds. Put the wedges into a large bowl, avoiding the juice (which can be kept for another use).
  5. When you’re ready to serve, add the shallots, chilies, mint, cilantro, olive oil, and lime juice to the bowl with a generous pinch of salt and mix gently together.
  6. Arrange the steaks and any marinade left on the baking sheet on a large platter with the salad (or plate individually). Swirl the crème fraîche into the reserved marinade and serve alongside the steaks, and squeeze the lime wedges over the top.

Reprinted from Ottolenghi Flavor. Copyright © 2020 by Yotam Ottolenghi and Ixta Belfrage. Photographs copyright © 2020 by Jonathan Lovekin. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.

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Eliza Sullivan

Eliza Sullivanmbg Editorial Assistant Eliza Sullivan is an Editorial Assistant at mindbodygreen. She received a B.S. in journalism and B.A. in english literature with honors from Boston University, and she has previously…

Try This Cruciferous Veggie Stew:@mindbodygreen


Chock-full of glucosinolates + bright phytonutrient colors, this hearty, vibrant stew will brighten your bowls all winter long.

Try This Cruciferous Veggie Stew: Because It’s Winter & Gut Health Matters
Cruciferous veggies? Yes, please!


  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 2 small parsnips, cut into thick slices
  • 1 cup Brussels sprouts, sliced lengthwise in thirds
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 2 cups unpeeled, cubed golden potatoes
  • 4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 (15 oz.) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp. caraway seeds (more or less to taste)
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. molasses
  • 1 tbsp. low-sodium tamari
  • 1 cup chopped napa cabbage
  • 1 cup chopped red cabbage
  • 1 cup chopped Swiss chard, thick stems removed
  • 4 to 5 baby bok choy, quartered
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  1. Heat a large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Once hot, sauté the onions, parsnips, and Brussels sprouts with as little water as possible—use just enough to avoid burning—until the onions are translucent and begin to caramelize.
  2. Add the garlic and cook for 30 to 45 seconds, until golden brown, taking care not to burn. Add the potatoes and broth and bring to a boil. Simmer for 15 minutes until the potatoes begin to soften but aren’t quite fully cooked. (They will cook further as the vegetables steam.)
  3. Add the tomatoes, caraway seeds, apple cider vinegar, molasses, and tamari. Simmer for 1 to 2 minutes to meld the flavors, and then taste and add more vinegar, molasses, or tamari as needed.
  4. Add the napa cabbage, red cabbage, Swiss chard, and bok choy, allowing it all to float on top. Cover to steam for about 5 minutes, until the desired tenderness is reached.
  5. Ladle out the vegetables from the top of the pot and add an equal portion to each bowl, or stir everything together before serving. This soup is even better—although not quite as colorful—the second day.

Excerpted from The Healthspan Solution, reprinted by permission of Alpha Books, a division of Penguin Random House LLC. Copyright © 2019 by Julieanna Hever and Ray Cronise.