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Tom Sarafian

Tom Sarafian is head chef at Bar Saracen, the spot in Melbourne to grab middle-eastern food that's grounded in the authentic with a rebellious twist. And while his creations are big on flavour, they're mercifully low on faff and ideal to tackle at home.

Tom's signature hummus is mouthwatering. Full stop. Eat it as a starter. It eat as a snack. Go all in and straight up spoon it out of the bowl. With creamy chickpeas, melt-in-your-mouth lamb, and subtle pine nut crunch, it's unforgettable stuff.

The fatteh is equally droolworthy. With layers of golden flatbread, sweet roasted cauliflower, smooth tahini, fragrant salad and a pool of burnt-butter roasted nuts, we ask, quite seriously, what's not to like?

Cauliflower Fatteh


300g Cauliflower
100g Cooked chickpeas
¼ Bunch coriander
¼ Bunch parsley
¼ Bunch mint
1 Red chilli
¼ Red onion
2 Spring onions
1 Teaspoon sumac
Flaked sea salt
1 Lemon
300ml Olive oil
1 Piece pita bread
50g Tahini
1 Clove garlic, crushed in mortar and pestle or finely chopped
200g Yoghurt
Pinch ground cinnamon
Pinch smoked paprika
1 Tablespoon walnuts
1 Tablespoon sliced almonds
1 Tablespoon pine nuts
50g Butter


1. Pre heat oven to 180c
2. Cut cauliflower into small pieces, drizzle with a little olive oil and season with sea salt
3. Place on tray and cook in oven for 15 minutes until just cooked through, dust with paprika
4. Brush olive oil onto pita bread and bake in oven 5 minutes till golden and crunchy  
5. Re-heat cooked chickpeas in a pot with their cooking liquid 
6. Mix tahini, yoghurt, juice of ½ lemon, pinch salt and garlic, add splash of water 
7. Wash herbs, dry and roughly chop then place in mixing bowl
8. Slice onions and red chilli, mix with herbs, season with pinch of salt and sumac
9. Dress salad with juice of ½ lemon and 3 tablespoons olive oil
10. Melt butter, add nuts and cook till golden brown

To assemble, place warm pumpkin in serving bowl
Top with hot chickpeas and a little of their cooking liquid
Mix salad and place on top of cauliflower and chickpeas
Crumble bread and layer on top
Spread tahini yoghurt over the bread
Dust with cinnamon 
Pour hot nut butter over yoghurt


Perfectly Paired With Grapefruit Honey Cooler


40mls Starward Nova
40mls Grapefruit juice
10mls Honey
1 dash Orange bitters
Soda to top


Add all ingredients except soda to a shaker. Make sure to stir well before shaking to make sure honey is broken up and mixed through. Shake with ice. Strain into glass and add soda [approx 40mls]. Fill with ice and garnish with grapefruit slices.

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Hummus & Spiced Lamb


250g Dried chickpeas
120g Ice
120g Tahini
1 Tbsp Sea Salt
50mls Olive Oil
50mls Lemon Juice
1 large Garlic Clove
A small pinch of Bi-Carb Soda

30g Pine nuts
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1/2 Brown Onion (diced)
30g Salted Butter
100g Minced Lamb
3 Twists of Black Pepper
Pinch Ground Cinnamon
Pinch Ground Allspice
Pinch Smoked Paprika
1 Tsp Maras Pepper (Substitute Chilli Flakes)
1 Tsp Sea Salt Flakes
1/4 bunch Parsley (roughly chopped)


Cover and soak the chickpeas in cold water with the bi-carb for 24 hours
Drain, rinse and put into pot (topped up with fresh water)
Bring to boil, turn down to simmer, and cook for 1 hour or until chickpeas are soft to touch
Once cooked, drain hot chickpeas and let sit in a colander to dry for 1 minute
Carefully place hot chickpeas into blender and blitz on high speed for 5 minutes
Delight in a sip of whisky as you wait 
Add tahini, ice and salt to the chickpeas 
Blitz for another 3 minutes
Smash garlic in mortar and pestle (or finely chop)
Add garlic and lemon juice to hummus
Blitz a further minute
Pour hummus into bowl and cover with olive oil to prevent a skin forming
Set aside while you cook the lamb

Lamb & pine nuts:
Take a small pot and add the olive oil and pine nuts
Fry on a low heat until the pine nuts are lightly golden brown
Peel and dice the onion into small pieces
Add to the fried nuts
Continue to cook on a low heat for 5 minutes until onions are soft
Add the butter, lamb, salt and spices
Continue to cook for another 5 minutes until the lamb is completely cooked
Take off heat, add paprika and paprika
Stir to combine.

Pour on top of hummus
Decorate with paprika fork lines
Add your favourite bread and enjoy!

Perfectly Paired With Two-Fold Mint Buck


40ml Starward Two Fold
20ml Lemon juice
10ml Sugar syrup
Small handful of mint
Ginger beer to top


Add all ingredients except Ginger Beer to tall glass. 
Press mint gently in bottoms of glass and fill with ice. 
Top with ginger beer and give a brief stir to mix ingredients through. 
Garnish with mint sprig and eco straw.

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