Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Creamy Cauliflower And Lakers Magic!!

   One thing I love about fixing a tandoori chicken lunch is the simplicity. Once the chicken has been marinated, nothing goes better with this dish than a bread some pickled cucumbers and one veg. The most likely vegetable to find on my tandoori table is cauliflower. Especially when I can get a beautiful organic one for 99 cents!
  Usually I fix cauliflower with mustard seed and cilantro with this chicken dish, but this time I wanted to do something different. I had some buttermilk in the house and a cauliflower recipe that I'd yet to try. It seemed like the prefect opportunity to experiment with a recipe from Yamuna Devis book Vegetarian Table:India .
 This is the perfect fast dish for cauliflower sales. Here's how you do it. Take one cauliflower, wash it and break it into small florets.

In a mortar or spice grinder mix:
 1 Tbs of coriander seed
1 tsp of cumin seed
1/2 tsp of fennel seed
 Crush them up.

 In a deep skillet or  kadhai heat 2 Tbs of vegetable oil.
when it's hot, toss in a 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and cut into thin little strips.

Stir fry it for about 30 seconds then toss in the crushed spices along with:
1/4 tsp of cayenne
1/2 tsp of turmeric
1/2 Tbs of sugar and a bit of water to keep things moving.

Quickly add in the cauliflower and stir fry it for a minute or two getting it covered in spices. Then lower the heat, put a lid on things and let it cook for about 15 minutes or so. Give the pan a
shake every now and then to make sure nothing is sticking.

 When the cauliflower is tender, add salt and pepper to taste. Then warm up 1/2 cup of buttermilk and mix it into the cauliflower.

Sprinkle the whole thing with a bit of chopped fresh cilantro and you're done!  That is the simplicity of Tandoori cooking. Just think of it as a barbecue, because that is what it is. The dishes should be fresh and complimentary to what you're serving...also easy does it every time.

     Besides how to get my mitts on good tandoori without a "for reals" Tandoori oven, the other obsession around our house is Basketball. If you haven't figured it out by now we love Basketball. Especially Lakers Basketball. I know I must sound like a Northern California traitor to be loving the Lakers. I really shouldn't. All my family history is against it.
    My family came to California in 1848, before it was part of the US. I'm a 5th generation San Franciscan and by rights should only be rooting for  the SF Giants and the 49ers and of course the Sonoma Valley High School teams..Go Dragons!
     However, years of living in Los Angeles turned us into dyed in the wool Lakers Fans. Even though we're now living in the Wine Country of Sonoma..definitely Northern California, the loyalty to LA Basketball remains.
     Of course the greatest rivalry in all basketball is the blood feud between the Lakers and the Celtics. Right now that is the battle that's being fought for the championship,  so we've been riveted to the TV for each and every playoff game.
   When it comes to basketball, my superstitious Guidette kicks in and I get weird about a lot of stuff. What food is served for luck, where I watch the game, and who watches the game with me. Understand, I do have powers when it comes to Lakers Baketball. I feel that I'm controlling the outcome of the game right from my living room.
 So on Sunday, I cooked an Indian dinner for a friend who Alan and I thought brought luck. The last time the Lakers won, he happened to show up at the house unannounced and the Lakers kicked Boston ass! So last Sunday there he was again,  sitting on our couch, and Rajon Rondo hit basket after basket and Ron Artest could not catch a break ! The Lakers were beaten badly by Boston. Obviously it was his fault!
  For last nights' game I felt we needed big mojo. When another friend mentioned that he owned a Kobe Bryant autographed basketball we said...bring it! That would be the totem we needed to insure a Laker victory.
 So the ball was placed in a prominent position, I baked some pizzas and it was game on!

The Lakers won by a comfortable margin (22 points!) and now the series is tied and Thursday is Do or Die Day at our house.
  Last night we celebrated with ice cream sundaes, homemade vanilla ice cream with chocolate sauce and whipped cream out of a can!

 Patsy, who doesn't care when I make real whipped cream, always comes running at the sound of the canned stuff. She was rewarded as were we all in a great victorious mood! It was whipped cream for everybody!!
Our friend Terri was very generous with Patsy. At least she didn't spray it directly into Patsys' mouth, 'cause Terri has class!
 Our friend Chip, who brought the Basketball and Patsy were both happy and blissed out after dessert.
 Tomorrow, the Lakers meet the Celtics in the Final Showdown..I'm already planning the victory feast.
Canned whipped cream for all canids!


  1. Another great recipe - this is a great way to dress up cauliflower. Even in the middle of Utah, my husband and two boys donned their Lakers' jerseys last night and we all cheered our hearts out. Next stop - game 7.

  2. @Cookin'Canuck,
    no kidding..Can't wait for tomorrow!!I told Chip that if we put some whipped cream on that ball Patsy could lick the autograph right off it!

  3. i'm loving all the cauliflower recipes! it ties with broccoli as my favorite veggie. good luck with your basketball team - i prefer hockey myself. that's also pretty awesome about being a 5th generation native!

  4. Awesome recipe. I like cauliflower and how it absorbs flavours.

  5. I live in a cauliflower growing area and we're being told now its a very unfashionable vegetable- what a pity to have fashions in veg. I love cauliflower and this recipe is another great one to add to the collection. Thanks

  6. I love that cauliflower dish - and I can't believe you got an organic cauli for 99cents! You rule.

  7. Beautiful dish. I love cauliflower. Good luck tonight too (though I lean towards the Celtics).

  8. I'm bookmarking this right now. It looks like some mighty delicious cauliflower!

  9. That cauliflower looks so tasty...Great pics:)



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