It must be that time of year. I’m craving curry and I’m craving a health-kick, and I want them now. Roasted cauliflower curry takes care of both.
Remember when I said how much I love Indian cuisine? That’s true. Very true. It’s amazing food, and one of favourites. But it’s only half the truth.
I also love Pakistani cuisine. Not so different from Indian foods in many ways, it does in fact share a huge amount of similarities with it. This isn’t particularly surprising as the two countries have a much entwined history – they were together until 1947.
The sheer scope and size of the Indian and Pakistani cuisines makes it hard to pin down exactly what characterises them. As they vary wildly from region to region, there is no such thing as a truly defined example, just a beautiful hot pot of cooking skills and knowledge that often include many varieties of curry mixes, oils and spices.
This particular recipe comes from Rabia in Pakistan, and it’s an absolute stellar example of Pakistani-based cooking. The ingredients are pretty straight-forward: it’s a curry dish using roasted cauliflower on a tomato base, but the way it’s cooked has a huge impact on fusing all those lovely ingredients into something great.
Roasted Cauliflower Curry – The Way To Cook
Let me say right away this roasted cauliflower curry needs attention to make it really tasty. But then it’ll be REALLY tasty! The roasting part is crucial here.
‘Why roast the bloody cauliflower anyway?’ you might ask. ‘Why not just steam it instead?’.
Well, if you steam or blanch cauliflower it’ll often go soft and mushy, but by roasting it, you bring out its sweetness. And caramelized veggies are awesome, and an integral part of this dish.
But here’s the kicker: if you roast veggies for too long they won’t taste sweet and crunchy anymore, they’ll be burned and crunchy instead. With a little care and attention you have the power to create a truly satisfying dish right at your fingertips – so give it the attention it deserves and follow the instructions in the recipe below 🙂
Roasted Cauliflower Curry – Good To Know
Rabia would like to point out that cauliflower is ridiculously nutritious, a wonderfully healthy vegetable. It has been found to help out with decreasing the risk of so many serious ailments including cancer, heart disease, diabetes and obesity. It’s something that WHFoods recommend eating on a very regular basis to keep your heart and body in tip-top condition.
She also notes that cauliflower can cause gastric problems for an unlucky few – but thankfully there is a way around this. Adding celery seeds to cauliflower (or to other dishes for that matter) can massively help with bloating of the stomach, as well as keeping exhaustion, headaches and nervousness at bay.
Pregnant women should stay away from celery seeds however, and as hurrythefoodup.com is not a medical care or advice giver in any way you should always check with a relevant qualified professional (i.e your doctor) when changing any aspects of your diet.
Roasted Cauliflower Curry
An exciting fusion of Pakistani spices combine with crunchy roasted cauliflower in this classically cooked dish.
- 1 medium cauliflower, cut in bite sized florets
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1 red onion, thinly sliced
- 1 cup tomato puree (or 1 cup purée = 3 ripe tomatoes, diced, or one can of diced tomatoes)
- 2 garlic cloves
- ½ tsp cumin
- ½ tsp dried coriander seeds (parsley is a great alternative too. ½ tsp dried coriander seeds = ¼ cup fresh parsley or 1 tsp dried)
- ½ tsp red pepper flakes
- ½ tsp curry powder
- salt and pepper to taste
- ½ inch ginger, peeled and grated (½ inch = ca. 1.5 cm)
- fresh coriander for garnishing
Preheat oven at 350°F (180°C).
Toss the cauliflower florets with salt, black pepper, lemon juice and half of olive oil. Place the florets on a baking tray and of it goes into the oven.
After 10 minutes take out the sheet and turn over the florets so they won’t burn (Important!). Then roast for another 10 minutes.
In the meanwhile, heat oil in a saucepan and add onion. Saute for 2 to 3 minutes until translucent.
Add finely chopped garlic, cumin, coriander seeds and red pepper flakes to the onion along with the curry powder and again saute for 30 seconds until aromatic.
Finally add tomato purée (or tinned or fresh tomatoes), season with salt, cover the lid and simmer for about 5 to 6 minutes.
If using fresh tomatoes then mash with a wooden spatula when tender.
Take out the roasted cauliflower from the oven and add it to the sauce mixture in the pan. You might want to a couple of dashes of water as well.
Cook on low heat for about 10 minutes then finally add some grated ginger and fresh coriander. Serve with (soy) yogurt and enjoy hot.
The type of tomatoes used in this dish makes a big difference to taste too. I much prefer the tomato purée version and would highly recommend it. It’s also worth noting that the flavours come out much more intensely on the second day, so if you have the chance to cook this meal the day you need it, then go for it! If not, you’ll just be in line for some really tasty leftovers 😉
To feel satisfied you’ll probably want a few carbs on the side. White rice or garlic or naan bread goes really well for that purpose!
Thanks Rabia for passing us this recipe! We’re big fans. And we’re definitely going to keep bugging you for more recipe inspiration 🙂