yogurt-marinated roasted cauliflower

Spring Break is here and more importantly, Spring is here! So, next week is going to be full of slow-paced days, long sleepy nights, leisurely cooking and a happy stomach. A bit of work would be nice too!

In other exciting news, the community garden next to my building is back in action. After the dreary winter months, the school kids have been diligently weeding and replanting. I am hoping I will get to volunteer too! I love gardening. It reminds me of childhood visits to my grandparents’ farmhouse where, as a little girl, I would get my hands dirty and bruised in the soil, a khurpi in tow and help baba tend to our kitchen garden.

In not so exciting news from my fridge, an entire bunch of broccoli rabe turned yellow and a carton of yogurt went bad because I over-shopped and didn’t end up using them. I feel terrible when food gets wasted. I have become better at it, but clearly more effort needs to be put into careful grocery shopping and planning. At least, I rescued a bunch of asparagus by making a lemon-y risotto with crème fraîche and a big head of cauliflower by making these yogurt-marinated roasted florets.

The recipe is very simple. You start by marinating the florets overnight (or at least a couple of hours) and then roast them. The list of ingredients looks long, but everything is to taste and approximate. It’s fine if you don’t have all the spices on hand. Use whatever you feel like and have. It’s nice to have some tang, but you don’t have to use yogurt AND lemon juice AND dry mango powder. Similarly, you don’t need to use red chilli powder AND black pepper powder AND green chilli paste. Of course, these things impart different types of sourness and heat, but you get my point.

Ingredients

  • Cauliflower, 1 medium
  • Plain yogurt, 1 – 1.5 cups
  • Chickpea flour (besan), 1-2 tbsp
  • Red chilli powder
  • Turmeric
  • Coriander powder
  • Roasted cumin powder
  • Garam masala powder
  • Lemon juice
  • Dry mango (amchoor) powder
  • Salt
  • Black pepper powder
  • Fresh cilantro
  • Vegetable oil, 1 tbsp
  • Dry fenugreek leaves (kasoori methi)
  • Ginger paste
  • Garlic paste
  • Green chilli paste

Method

  • Trim and chop the cauliflower into chunky florets.
  • In a large bowl, combine everything else into a smooth paste. Add the cauliflower and cover all the florets with the marinade.
  • Keep in the fridge overnight or at least for 2-3 hours.
  • Arrange the florets on a baking tray lined with parchment paper or foil. Tip: Even if you marinate the florets in a lot of yogurt, make sure that when you put them on the roasting tray, they aren’t overloaded with excessive marinade. This will prevent sogginess.

  • Roast in a 350 deg oven till the cauliflower is soft, but still firm and has dark brown edges. It took me around 40 minutes.

  • Eat with a coriander chutney or as it is!
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