Cauliflower and potato curry with fried cheese

This dish is based on a couple of different things. The first was a recipe I made earlier this year from Epicurious for Tofu Aloo Gobi, aka Cauliflower and Potato Curry. The second was an episode of Spice Goddess where the host fried some paneer until golden and added it to a curry. I removed the tofu from the first recipe, and used a queso de freir instead of paneer as the local market doesn’t carry paneer.

Cauliflower and Potato Curry with Fried Cheese


Cauliflower and Potato Curry with Fried Cheese
Servings: 6-8 as a side
Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: 40 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 4 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 white potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1 head cauliflower, cored and sliced into bite size pieces
  • 1 Tbsp. grated fresh or jarred ginger
  • 2 tsp. garam masala
  • 2 tsp. sweet curry powder
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. turmeric
  • 1 tsp. ground corriander
  • 1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup frozen green peas
  • 12 oz. queso de freir, sliced into cubes
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro, optional
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Prep everything first. I know, most recipes tell you to do this. Just get in the habit of doing it and you won’t be trying to find the dry mustard (which was in the original recipe and I didn’t have on hand) in the middle of your cooking.
  2. Heat 2 Tbsp. oil in a skillet or stir-fry pan over medium heat. Add the onion and saute for 4-5 minutes until they start to soften. Add the garlic and saute another 30 seconds until aromatic.
  3. Add the potatoes and about 1 cup of water. Cover and bring to a simmer, then cook over medium heat for 5 minutes.
  4. Add the ginger, garam masala, curry powder, cumin, turmeric, and corriander and stir to combine. Add the cauliflower on top of everything. Cover and simmer gently for 5 minutes.
  5. Add the tomatoes and peas, and cook over medium-low heat for 10-15 minutes longer, stirring occasionally. You may wish to add an additional cup of water if the liquid looks low at this point.
  6. In a separate skillet heat the remaining oil over high heat. Add the queso and spread into a single layer. Cook, undisturbed, for 3-4 minutes. Check the first sign for browning and when a nice golden color has been imparted flip them over. Turn off the heat and let the residual heat brown the second side.
  7. Test the cauliflower and potatoes for tenderness. Potatoes should be soft, not mushy, while the cauliflower should have a bit of crunch left. Stir in the parsley/cilantro, season with salt & pepper to taste.
  8. Add the cheese to the curry, stir and serve.

Notes:
The fried cheese seemed like a good idea and seemed easy enough on the TV show. It stuck to my pan, which made for a frustrating few minutes as I tried to grab some good looking pieces to put on top. The cheese provided much of the salt for the dish so be careful not to over season the curry.

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