3 lbs. carrots, peeled and cut into 1/4″ slices (on the bias)
3 cups vegetable broth
1 15 oz. lite coconut milk
1 head cauliflower, cored and cut into 1/2″ pieces
1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes, drained
2 cups frozen peas
1/2 cup chopped cilantro or parsley (optional)
Place onions in a food processor and pulse until finely cut. Transfer to a bowl.
Place peppers in the food processor and pulse until finely cut. Transfer to a strainer to remove as much moisture as possible.
Combine the spices in a bowl and stir until well blended.
Prep remaining vegetables and set aside.
Heat a large dutch oven over medium heat for 3 minutes, or until smoking.
Add the onions and drained peppers along with a good pinch of kosher salt. Stir in the oil to coat and allow to cook for ~5 minutes until softened. Add the ginger and garlic; cook until aromatic, about 30 seconds, a minute at most.
Add the spice blend and stir into the onions/peppers. Allow to cook for about a minute, stirring a few times to prevent burning.
Add the carrots and vegetable broth. Bring to a simmer, cover and cook for 5 minutes
Add the coconut milk, cauliflower and drained tomatoes. Bring back to a simmer, recover and cook for 15 minutes
Add the frozen peas and cook to heat them through, about 5 minutes.
Garnish with chopped cilantro or parsley (if desired).
You may ask why I process the the onions and peppers separately. I found that the peppers produced so much liquid when chopped in the food processor that I wanted to strain that off so the dish didn’t have to work at evaporating the liquid. I actually took the pepper liquid, and the drained tomato liquid, combined them in a small pan, and simmered them until they reduced to about 1/3 of the original volume. I added that into the curry along with the coconut milk. I really didn’t notice them in the final product so I left that out of the recipe text.
This recipe is adapted from a great book I picked up years ago named Something for Everyone. The premise was to provide recipes that would make a dish for a family of vegetarians and non-vegetarians from one recipe. It appears to no longer be in print.
Here’s a taste of (Americanized) Thai food in your own kitchen. Yeah, that sounds a bit cheesy. Honestly this is just a simple combination of a handful of ingredients that can have a big impact. Plus, it comes together quickly so it is great on a crazy weeknight. I think it took longer for the rice to cook than it did to complete this dish.
I found this recipe in Joy of Cooking a few weeks back while looking for carrot recipes. No carrots here but cauliflower is near carrots alphabetically and this caught my eye.
The spinach makes a nice addition to what would otherwise be a rather beige dish. We enjoyed it over hot rice.
Cauliflower, Potato and Spinach Curry
Prep time: 20 minutes
Total time: 60 minutes
1 head cauliflower, cored and cut into bite size pieces
2 Russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2″ cubes
2 Tbsp. sweet curry powder
1 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and rough chopped
3 lg. garlic cloves, rough chopped
1 2-3″ piece of ginger, peeled and minced
2 Serrano chiles, seeded and minced
2 medium onions, 1/4″ dice
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 14 oz. can lite coconut milk
1/2 cup water
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 16 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
12 oz. spinach, stems removed and chopped into bit size pieces
Prep all your ingredients before you start cooking. Chop the cauliflower, dice the potato, slice the apple, etc. Measure out oil & water, open the cans, drain the chickpeas. It really makes things easier when you start working at the stove.
Combine the curry powder and flour in a small bowl. Stir to combine and set aside.
3/4 fill a large sauce pan with water and bring it to a boil. Fill a separate bowl with cold water (few ice cubes would help but aren’t necessary).
While the water comes to a boil combine the apple, garlic, ginger and peppers in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Processor for 10-15 seconds to finely chop the apple and combine.
Once the water is boiling add the cauliflower, return to a boil and cook for 5 minutes. When 5 minutes is up remove the cauliflower from the hot water and transfer to a the cold water bath.
Add the cubed potatoes and cook for 5 minutes. Transfer these to the cold water bath as well.
In a large pot heat the oil over medium heat until it shimmers. Add the chopped onions and apple/garlic/ginger/pepper mixture. Stir to coat and cook until the onions begin to soften, about 5-7 minutes.
Add the curry powder/flour mix and stir to coat the vegetables. Cook for ~3 minutes to bloom the spices in the curry powder and cook out the raw flour taste.
Add the coconut milk, water and salt. Stir and bring to a boil.
Drain the cauliflower & potatoes; add them to the curry along with the chickpeas. Return to a boil, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
Dump the spinach on top of the curry and cover the pot. Let the spinach steam for a minute then stir it into the curry. Cook for 3-5 minutes; you want the spinach cooked but not lifeless.
Taste and adjust salt & pepper as you wish. Serve.
I’m always surprised by how much green comes off of spinach when you rinse them properly. Other greens can easily be substituted for the spinach.
The recipe seems to have a lot of steps. OK, the recipe has a lot of steps. The boiling/shocking steps can be a bit of a pain however I think it helps with the overall texture of the dish. You could probably skip the food processor if you want to grate the apple and chop garlic, ginger and peppers fine yourself. The end result is definitely worth the effort, at least in our opinion.