chiswick's hummus with pickled cauliflower

Chiswick's latest Spring menus is one of my favourites yet, packed with new flavours and texture. We went during the day mid week and even then the place was filled with Woollahra locals and the smart set reinvigorating the long lunch. And there was us. Chef Richie Dolan, with Matt Moran, does this smooth chickpea hummus with cumin dressing and pickled cauliflower. It's served with flatbread for dipping (recipe coming). I begged them for the recipe and they sweetly obliged. I still have reason to go, the fried chicken wings and Kingfish crostata, Moran's roasted family lamb among them... Here's the recipe for Chiswick's hummus with pickled cauliflower and guindilla peppers.

hummus, pickled cauliflower & guindilla peppers


  • 150 g tinned chickpeas
  • 25 ml olive oil
  • 1 tbs tahini
  • 1 clove confit garlic (recipe below)
  • Juice of 1⁄2 lemon
  • 1 tsp ground cumin

For the hummus, place all ingredients onto a food processor and blend until smooth. If the hummus is too thick, add a couple of tablespoons of warm water a little at a time, until it is the consistency of a puree. Season with salt and pepper to taste and then refrigerate until needed.

Pickling liquid

  • 500 ml rice wine vinegar
  • 250 ml Chardonnay vinegar
  • 150 g sugar
  • 3cm knob of ginger, roughly cut
  • 2 tbs black peppercorns
  • 1 tbs yellow mustard seeds
  • 1 tbs salt
  • 1 red chilli, halved lengthways
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1.2 litres water

For the pickling liquid, in a large, heavy-based saucepan, combine all the ingredients and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and strain the liquid through a fine mesh sieve. Discard solids and keep liquid in fridge until needed.

Pickled Cauliflower

  • 100g purple cauliflower, cut into large florets
  • 100g Romanesco cauliflower, cut into large florets
  • 100g white cauliflower, cut into large florets
  • 400ml pickling liquid

Separate cauliflower by colour into three saucepans and place on the stove. Cover with pickling liquor and a cartouche (baking paper cut to size to fit inside the saucepan to act as a lid) and bring to the boil. Take off the heat and leave to cool in the liquor until needed.

Cumin dressing

  • 5g confit garlic
  • 5g ground cumin
  • 50ml Chardonnay vinegar
  • 125 ml Cobram Estate olive oil

In a mixing bowl, combine the confit garlic and ground cumin and vinegar. Then slowly add the olive oil, whilst whisking to emulsify the dressing. Once all of the oil has gone, check for consistency and seasoning.

Confit garlic

  • 250 ml Cobram Estate olive oil
  • 1 bulb garlic, cloves separated and peeled
  • 2 sprigs rosemary

In a small heavy based saucepan add the olive oil, garlic and rosemary. Bring to the simmer over a low heat. Continue to simmer gently until the garlic is soft for about 20-30 minutes. Remove from the heat and leave the garlic to cool in the oil. Transfer to a sterilised jar, seal and store in the fridge for up to a week.

To serve

Spoon the hummus onto the plate and spread out with the back of the spoon in a circular motion. Drain all of the pickles from their liquid and drain onto a paper towel. Toss cauliflower in a bowl with the cumin dressing and season. Arrange the cauliflower onto the plate with the guindilla peppers and then garnish with fresh herbs and more cumin dressing.