Onionin invites you today to try a new version of meatless maqluba recipe. This version of maqluba is a showstopper: a tall, golden savory cake filled to bursting with tender vegetables and crowned with yielding rounds of tomatoes.
1. Adjust oven racks to middle positions and preheat oven to 204 C. Cover rice with water, stir in 1 teaspoon of salt, and let soak.
2. Stir together turmeric, cinnamon, cumin, coriander, and cloves in a small bowl. In a large bowl, toss eggplant slices with 3 tablespoons oil, 1/3 of the spice mixture, and salt and pepper to taste. Lay eggplant out on two rimmed baking sheets and roast, turning slices once, until eggplant is browned and tender, about 20 minutes.
3. In a large bowl, toss cauliflower with 2 tablespoons oil, 1/3 of the spice mixture, and salt and pepper to taste. Lay cauliflower out on a rimmed baking sheet and roast, stirring once, until cauliflower is browned and tender, about 20 minutes.
4. Assemble the maqluba: line the bottom of a Dutch oven with a circle of parchment paper, then brush paper and sides of pot with melted butter. Assemble tomato slices in a circle, covering bottom of pot and overlapping the slices as you go. Follow with the eggplant. Arrange cauliflower over eggplant. Drain rice thoroughly, then spread over cauliflower. Stir remaining spice mixture and 1 teaspoon salt into vegetable stock, and pour over rice. Scatter garlic pieces over top.
5. Place pot over high heat and bring stock to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Cover pot with a tight-fitting lid and simmer for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, remove pot from heat, remove lid, drape a clean tea towel over top of pot, and quickly replace lid, letting dish set for 10 minutes. Quickly invert rice dish onto a large round platter; do not remove pot for 2-3 minutes. Remove pot and circle of parchment and serve maqluba with plain yogurt, hot sauce and chopped fresh cilantro, if desired.