A recipe that reminds me of my Mum with Meliz | Blossom Avenue

A recipe that reminds me of my Mum with Meliz

Published: 10 March 2021

When Blossom Avenue asked me to share a recipe that most reminds me of my mum, there were so many dishes that immediately sprung to mind. In fact, most of the traditional Cypriot recipes you see on my Instagram page and blog are the dishes that I grew up watching my mum cook at home; from köfte (meatballs) to börek (pastries), magarına (pasta) and çorba (soups), mum’s influence over my cooking is undisputable. So rather than sharing one specific recipe, I wanted to create a plate of food made up of ingredients and recipes that remind me most of the food she cooks for us.

When we were younger, for every family occasion, including large BBQs, as a side to roast dinners and even on Christmas Day, my mum would make large platters of hummus for everyone to enjoy. I would always save my roast potatoes until the end (my mum adds semolina or flour to her crispy roasties) so I could dip them straight into a big dollop of hummus; my favourite roast to enjoy with the hummus and potatoes has to be lamb.

Lamb is prevalent in Cypriot and Turkish cuisine, so whether my mum is making a stew, a Sunday roast or lighting the BBQ (of which she is a queen), then lamb too is her meat of choice. For the past few years, and now that the tables have turned, I have been cooking for my mum a lot more, and one of her favourite recipes is my Six Hour Slow Roasted Shoulder of Lamb. Therefore, I have taken the key flavours of that recipe and reinvented them for these absolutely delicious reverse-seared lamb rump steaks, served with a pomegranate molasses, balsamic, honey and coriander dressing, hummus and roast potatoes.

For the lamb:

4 lamb rump steaks

½ tsp dried oregano

2 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp sea salt flakes

¾ tsp coarse black pepper

1 tsp cumin


For the glaze and dressing:

2 tbsp (30ml) extra virgin olive oil

2 tbsp (30ml) pomegranate molasses

1 tbsp (15ml) lemon juice

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

2 tsp honey

1 tsp oregano

1 tsp dried mint

Pinch of salt

¼ tsp pul biber

25g fresh coriander, finely chopped



Preheat the oven to 75C (fan) / 95C

Sprinkle the oregano, salt and pepper onto both sides of the lamb rump steaks. Place the lamb steaks on a wire rack in a baking / roasting tray and place on the middle rack of the oven for 1 ½ hrs (when you take the lamb out of the oven, the internal temperature should be 62-65C for medium rare, 65-70C for medium – mine was 62C).

Meanwhile, prepare the dressing. Mix all of the dressing ingredients other than the pul biber and coriander. You can also prepare the hummus and roast potatoes while the lamb is in the oven.

Take the lamb out of the oven leave on the rack while you start to heat up a large frying pan on a high heat.

Mix together the olive oil and cumin and brush it onto both sides of the lamb rump steaks.

When the pan is smoking hot, add two steaks at a time to the pan, and cook for 1 minute on the first side and 45 seconds on the second. Using a large set of tongs, line up the two steaks together, fat side down and render the fat until dark and crispy.

Remove to a carving board, and while the meat is still hot, immediately brush both sides of the steaks with the dressing and allow them to rest while you cook the other two steaks using the same method. Add the pul biber and fresh coriander to the remaining dressing, stir well, and once the steaks have rested for 10 minutes, carve and serve on a platter with the coriander dressing, hummus and potatoes.


For the hummus:

450g cooked chickpeas (300g dried chickpeas soaked overnight and boiled / 1 x 660g jar or 2 x 400g cans of good quality chickpeas)

1-2 finely chopped garlic cloves (to your own taste)

5 tbsp tahini

1 tbsp olive oil

1/2 tsp salt

40-60ml freshly squeezed lemon juice (to your own taste)


To garnish:

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

2 tbsp pine nuts

¼ tsp paprika

¼ pul biber

¼ ground cumin

¼ tsp summak

2 tbsp toasted pine nuts

*If using boiled chickpeas, make sure they have fully cooled before using them in this recipe

*If using boiled / tinned chickpeas, use some of the water (aquafaba) the chickpeas have been boiled in / water from the can to loosen the hummus if you find that it’s too thick when you blend the ingredients together. Just a little (tbsp) aquafaba at a time. If you are using jarred chickpeas, all brands vary, so if the chickpeas are loose in the water like those in a can, then do as above. If they are thicker and congealed within the liquid, then add the whole jar to the blender.



Reserve a tbsp of chickpeas to garnish.

Add the remaining chickpeas, garlic, tahini, olive oil, lemon juice and salt to the blender and add a tbsp of the aquafaba as mentioned above. Blend together and if too thick, add another tbsp of liquid. Keep blending until the hummus is of a smooth and creamy consistency.

Toast the pine nuts in a dry frying pan over a medium heat. This should only take a couple of minutes but keep moving the pan around so that the pine nuts do not burn.

Spread the hummus onto a large plate or platter and garnish with the reserved chickpeas, pine nuts, extra virgin olive oil, spices and fresh parsley to serve.


Roast Potatoes:

1kg Maris Piper Potatoes, peeled and cut into large 3-4 inch chunks

1/2 tbsp flour

1 tsp sea salt flakes

60ml vegetable-based oil

A few sprigs of rosemary

6 garlic cloves, left whole and bashed



Add the potatoes to a large pan, cover with cold water, place on a high heat and boil for 7-8 minutes, drain in a colander, shake them around to rough up the edges then allow to steam dry and cool.

Preheat your oven to 200C (fan) / 220C. Add the oil to a roasting tray and once the oven is hot, pop on the top shelf for 15 minutes until smoking hot.

Once the potatoes have cooled, sprinkle over the flour, and give the potatoes a very gentle shake. Carefully take the tray out of the oven and add the potatoes to the hot oil, tilting the pan slightly to coat the potatoes in the oil. Sprinkle over the sea salt flakes and pop the tray back onto the top shelf of the oven.

Roast the potatoes for 45-55 minutes turning halfway through, adding the rosemary and garlic to the tray at this point, and turning once more 10 minutes before the end.

Written by: Meliz Berg

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