Friday, April 23, 2010

Fast And Creamy, Super Dreamy, Cauliflower Curry


 Let's get this up front right now. I am cheap. If I can get a bargain, I do. I love nothing more than something that I can get for 99 cents. Unless I can get it for 89 cents ! Make it organic and 89 cents and I'm in, baby! This was the situation with cauliflower the other day. I don't care if I don't particularly like a vegetable (of course I love cauliflower) for 89 cents I can make it more lovable than Johnny Depp crossed with puppies.
I was also looking for something that would be easy to fix. Last weekend we were jurors at the Sonoma International Film Festival and then bright and early Tuesday morning Alan had cataract surgery. The surgery came about because two years ago he got a torn retina and had surgery to fix that. That repair caused a premature cataract to form which the opthamologist said happens quite frequently in those cases. I took him in for laser surgery, a fairly quick and clean procedure. Still, it didn't leave me a whole lot of time for cooking or blogging. Thus, the cauliflower.
One of the cookbooks that Paula Wolfert gave me for my birthday was India, The Vegetarian Table by Yamuna Devi who happens to be one of my favorite Indian cookbook authors.  There I found a great new dish that I could make with my 89 cent organic cauliflower. Here's my adaptation of it.
 In a spice grinder or good old mortar and pestle, mash up:
1 Tbs of coriander seed
1 tsp of cumin seed
1/2 tsp of fennel seed
Set it aside.
Cut a large cauliflower into small florets. The pieces should be smaller than usual, little buds of cauliflower.
In a skillet or kadhai heat :
2 Tbs of vegetable oil and  a bit of butter for taste
 When the oil is hot and sizzling add in:
A 1 inch piece of ginger thinly julienned
Stir fry that for about 30 seconds and then toss in the spice mixture along with
1/4 tsp of kashmiri chili (substitute 1/b tsp cayenne plus 1/8 tsp of paprika)
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 Tbs of sugar
And a tsp or two of water
 Stir this mixture together than add in the cauliflower.
Stir the cauliflower around to coat it with the spice mixture for about 3 minutes then lower the heat and Put a lid on the pan.
Let it cook for another 20 minutes or so, shake the pan every now and then to keep things moving, try not to take the lid off.
When the cauliflower is cooked season it with salt and pepper to taste then add in:
1/2 cup of warm yogurt or buttermilk
Dribble a bit of melted butter over the dish along with 3 Tbs of chopped fresh cilantro and serve.
 Of course Patsy had to get into the act also. She wasn't particularly interested in the cauliflower however some fresh homemade vanilla ice cream got the full chin on the knee "please to gimmee?" treatment.
It's now Friday and Alan is doing great, he's getting his new eye glass prescription on Monday and is demanding naan bread and an Indian lunch on Sunday. The patient is always right.

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