The exciting thing about this recipe is that it can be served as an Indian dish or as a Western dish. The presentation is spectacular for serving it to guests. Its a healthy recipe too. I am on Keto Diet right now and this kind of stuff is super comforting and filling
- 400 gms whole cauliflower small
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 cinnamon stick 2/3rd of your index finger
- ½ tsp black pepper whole
- 2 cardamoms
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 fresh green chili, slit sideways across its length
- 1 tsp ginger finely sliced
- 1 onion finely chopped
- 1 to mato roughly chopped
- 1 tbsp tomato paste (2 tbsp tomato puree)
- Handful of Basil leaves or coriander leaves, if you don’t have basil
- ½ tsp salt and a pinch or two extra
- 2 tbsp olive oil or vegetable oil
Trim off the leaves of the cauliflower from the sides to uncover the whole cauliflower. Cut off the stalk so that the cauliflower can sit on it. Trick is not to cut too much so that the florets become loose and fall apart. The whole cauliflower needs to be intact. Wash it thoroughly
Blanch the cauliflower in boiling water with a pinch of salt for 10 mins. Turn the cauliflower every two minutes gently. You do this for two reasons: 1) to lower the cooking time of the cauliflower 2) to get rid of any worms as they will float on top of the water. Remove any worms using a spoon. Take it out whole using a wide slotted spoon
In the mean time, heat a deep pan with a thick bottom at low heat for a couple of minutes
Add the oil and heat for another couple of minutes
Now add all the dry spices one by one: bay leaf, cinnamon stick, cumin seeds (let it splinter a bit) followed by whole pepper, cardamoms.
After the splintering stops, add the chili and onions. Cook the onions in high flame stirring continuously till it turns pink and starts leaving some oil around the edges.
Then add the sliced ginger and cook it for a minute more.
Now add the tomatoes, tomato paste and salt. Mix well, turn the flame to low and place the base cauliflower at the center. Sprinkle a pinch of more salt on the cauliflower.
Add 1/4th a cup of water and put a lid on to cook the cauliflower and tomatoes. Cook for 10 mins moving gently a few times ensuring that you don’t break the cauliflower. Mix the tomatoes as well to cook it evenly.
After 10 m turn the cauliflower on its head and cook for another 10 mins moving it occasionally, keeping the lid on. This will help roast the florets. Add a 2 tbsp of water if the sauce starts to dry up. Keep a watch not to burn the cauliflower.
Take the lid off. Flip the cauliflower back on its base and continue cooking for 5 mins on open medium heat.
The cauliflower should be ready. You will know that is is cooked when you can nip of the base stem easily with spoon or knife.
Take the cauliflower out and keep it aside. Put the sauce at the bottom of a serving dish and place the cauliflower on top. Garnish it with basil leaves or coriander leaves. Bon Appetite
Food Marriage Tips
- Indian spices and cauliflowers are a match made it heaven. Something about a rub of pepper, cumin, turmeric, cardamons, cinnamon, red chili on it just works. The way I think about it is that cauliflower is a peppery tasting veggie, hence peppers and sweet spices will work beautifully to balance it
- I love the taste of tomatoes with cauliflower too. I think they pair beautifully if done right. I don't like raw tasting tomatoes with cauliflower at all. But that is just me 🙂
- Another tip: you should try frying cauliflower florets in mustard oil, salt and turmeric. It is my comfort food
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Like this recipe? you might want to check out my other recipes: