Celeb chefs like Yotam Ottolenghi have brought Middle Eastern flavours to the fore, so show off your trendy side by serving this ‘spice and easy’ menu at your next get-together


  • 400ml chicken or vegetable stock
  • 300g quinoa
  • 30ml olive oil
  • 1 red onion, peeled and cut into
  • thin wedges
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 15ml fresh ginger, finely grated
  • 500g chicken fillets, sliced or cubed
  • 15ml ground coriander
  • 10ml sumac*
  • 5ml ground cumin
  • salt and ground black pepper
  • 500g oven-roasted pumpkin or butternut
  • 250g cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 6 spring onions, sliced
  • 50g pomegranate seeds
  • 60ml fresh coriander, torn
  • 30ml fresh mint, torn
  • 30ml orange zest


  1. Bring the stock to the boil and add the quinoa. Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover and cook for 15–20 minutes, until the quinoa is tender. Drain off any excess liquid and set aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a large frying pan. Gently fry the onion for 4–5 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for 2–3 minutes.
  3. Toss the chicken in the coriander, sumac, cumin, salt and pepper. Add to the onion mixture and cook for 6–8 minutes, or until the chicken is just cooked. Add the cooked pumpkin, cherry tomatoes and the quinoa and cook for 2–3 minutes, to heat through.
  4. Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining ingredients.
  5. Transfer to a serving platter and serve warm or at room temperature.

*COOK’S NOTE: Sumac is a dark red spice with a nutty, tart lemon flavour. It can be found at large supermarkets or Middle Eastern delicatessens. Alternatively, substitute a mixture of 10ml paprika and 10ml lemon juice for the sumac.

(Serves 4)