Cauliflower and Potato Curry

Posted By Kerri

We decided to go meat-free this evening and didn’t need to look much further than Camelia Panjabi for inspiration. This cauliflower and potato curry had caught my eye last week and since I had everything else I needed, apart from the cauliflower, it had the added bonus of being an economical dish too.

This recipe is slightly more complicated than the chana dal I cooked on Monday but still wasn’t that taxing, even when I had to dash out midway through for coconut milk (so much for having everything I needed). I had to tweak the recipe slightly since I’d been unable to track down a fresh coconut and I suspect this may have upset the careful balance of sauteeing and simmering that Camelia talks so much about. I also didn’t have any fenugreek so left that out too. Definitely not winning any points for careful-recipe-following tonight. Recipe below is therefore different to the version that appears in the book.

This was an interesting dish, since I’m really only used to coconut milk featuring in Thai curries. The sweetness of the coconut seemed to jar against the deep, earthy Indian spices at first but the more I ate, the more I found myself getting used to it and enjoying it. Despite that and while I know it’s not a very imaginative view, I would have preferred this as a side dish since the lack of meat (even though we had double carbs in the form of potatoes and rice) left me feeling somewhat unsatisfied.

Cauliflower and Potato Curry
Serves Three

Oil, for frying
4 small onions, chopped (Camelia has the same habit as Madhur in referring to onions by weight, this is roughly equivalent to the 300g stated)
5 dried red chillies (I used 3 fresh chillies)
2 teaspoons coriander seeds
1/8 teaspoon mustard seeds
1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 1/2 cm cinnamon stick
4 peppercorns
2 cloves
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon tamarind juice
1 tin coconut milk
2 cm piece of ginger, grated
4 garlic cloves, crushed
1 large potato, chopped
1 medium cauliflower, divided into florets

Saute half the onions for 2 – 3 minutes and then set aside.

Next, saute the chillies, coriander, mustard and cumin seeds, cinnamon, peppercorns and cloves for 30 seconds then remove.

Transfer the onions and spices into a blender, add the turmeric, paprika and tamarind and the coconut milk and blend until smooth.

Saute the ginger and garlic for 15 seconds, followed by the rest of the onions for 7 – 8 minutes. Add the spice paste, cook for 2 minutes and then add the potatoes and cook for 5 minutes. Add the salt, 100ml water, cover and cook for 6 – 7 minutes.

Finally, add the cauliflower, cover with water and cook until tender.

The original recipe calls for the onions and spices to be blended with the fresh coconut to make a paste. Not really paying attention, I also added the coconut milk at this point which meant I didn’t really end up with a paste, instead rather a lot of liquid with some bits floating in it. In hindsight, I would add the coconut milk at the end of the cooking, at the same time as the cauliflower.

I’d also reduce the amount of water, since I needed to reduce the sauce quite drastically towards the end of the cooking time.

Or, perhaps, next time I’ll just follow the recipe.

Mar 11th, 2010

5 Comments to 'Cauliflower and Potato Curry'

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  1. Gareth said,

    I think its a fairly Western attitude that we feel unsatisfied unless we’ve had meat in the main dish!! As much as I love curries like this (and often make them for economic reasons), its never quite as satisfying as a good meat curry. I also wonder whether the fat from the meat makes something a bit tastier??

  2. Kerri said,

    I think the fat definitely makes a difference, it’s often the tastiest part!

  3. Lizzie said,

    I love, love love eating potatoes with rice. Carb on carb. Shame it wasn’t satisfying enough though.
    .-= Lizzie´s last blog ..Oxtail Ragu & Parmesan Polenta =-.

  4. This looks divine! I think i might be trying this very soon. Potato in a curry is one of my favourite things ever.
    .-= Jess Shanahan´s last blog ..New diet plan and more snowboarding =-.

  5. Kerri said,

    Potatoes and bread is my favourite carb on carb, Lizzie.

    Thanks Jess, I hope you like it.

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