Thursday, August 25, 2011

Cauliflower Koottu

We're not huge cauliflower fans at this house. We don't dislike it either....we all like it...just not huge fans. So, when it comes in the CSA box I need to think about how to use it in a way that most of us will be happy. I have found that a cookbook by some local women, Healthy South Indian Cooking, is a good resource when I have an abundance of some type of produce yet want something a bit different. These women are really local...they live on my friend's street in our little suburb.

In the past I have gone to an Indian grocery store to get the ingredients for some of the recipes in this book, but now, being a bit more pressed for time, I just omit anything I don't have. It seems that if you aren't too stingy on the salt and the oil these all turn out just fine.

Many of the recipes in this book end up tasting a bit of the same which is probably because I'm not purchasing all the ingredients. But, it's a good way to get out of a cooking rut...trying some of these dishes.

The original recipe calls for toor dal(I used lentils), asafoetida powder, curry leaves, and urad dal. I left out all of those ingredients except the substitution noted. This may be a case where I like mine only because I have never had the original, but I think that's OK. I'm happy with what I made and we got the cauliflower in our bodies.

Bring 4 c water to a boil. Add 1/2 c lentil and 1/4 t turmeric. Reduce heat and cook about 30 minutes or so..until it becomes creamy.
2 T oil in saucepan. Add 1 t mustard seeds. cover and cook until they burst. Add 1/4 c chopped onions, 1 T minced ginger, 1/4 t turmeric and 1 t chopped chile pepper(from our garden...yay).
Add cauliflower cut into 1" chunks. Blend well.
Add lentil mixture, 1/2 t cumin powder, and 1/2 t salt.
Cover and cook over low heat until cauliflower is tender.
Add 1 T unsweetened coconut.
I had some grilled potatoes leftover from another meal, so I chopped those and threw them into the mixture. There's something about potatoes and curry that I really like when they're together.

Serve over rice with mango chutney.

I wouldn't say that we LOVED this recipe but it certainly was fine for one dinner. I admit that we went out for frozen yogurt that night with a recent groupon purchase. The place we went probably won't be repeated....and this recipe won't be repeated...but none of it was terrible either. Probably next time I will go back to cauliflower cheese soup when I get some in the CSA box...just thinking that all the vegetables in it will balance out the cheese a bit.

Follow the link if you're wondering what koottu means!

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