Curing the Monday Night Blues: Roasted Curried Cauliflower Recipe

Roasted Curried Cauliflower


Ingredients:


1 medium to large head of cauliflower


1 large onion, peeled, quartered


1 teaspoon ground cumin


2 tablespoons curry powder


3 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted


1 tablespoon paprika


1 and 3/4 teaspoons salt


3/4 cup olive oil


1/2 cup red wine vinegar


Preparation:


1. Preheat oven to 450°F. Place cauliflower florets and onion quarters in a large roasting pan.


2. In a skillet over medium heat, toast the sesame seeds until light brown. Crush coarsely in mortar with pestle. Place seeds in medium bowl. Whisk in oil, vinegar, curry powder, paprika, and salt. Pour over vegetables and toss to coat.


3. Roast vegetables for 35 minutes (or until tender).


Additional tips:


The original recipe called for coriander and fresh cilantro. I was out of both, and decided to substitute the toasted sesame seeds and a dash of chili powder. When I pulled the dish out of the oven, the first thing I smelled was southern barbecue. Quite a treat, considering, well, just made cauliflower.


Hot tip: Also, waste not want not. According to Deborah Madison, author of Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone: "Don't neglect the leaves and stems [of the cauliflower], which are quite good alongside the florets."


...


Spiced Rice


I used a Texmati blend of white, brown, wild and red rice. Any one of those varieties is sufficient.


Ingredients:


1 teaspoon mustard seeds


1 teaspoon celery seeds


4 cardamom seeds


1 cinnamon stick, broke in half


I tablespoon olive oil


Rice (adjust based on serving size)


Preparation:


1. In a saucepan, heat olive oil. Add the spices and heat for 4-5 minutes. Add rice, and cook according to the package instructions. Be sure to remove (or steer clear of) the aromatics before eating.


Read more about my offbeat adventures is domesticity at playingh.wordpress.com. Photo from laurelfan/flickr.com.

Saturday morning at the farmer's market, I piled organic vegetable upon organic vegetable into my wicker basket with a genuine zest for life and good cooking that I was so sure would carry me through the week. Flash forward to early Monday evening. Under-caffeinated and stuck in rush hour traffic, I realized that I had a head of cauliflower, an unwashed bunch of romaine lettuce, onions, garlic and jalapenos in my fridge. That does not a dinner make — or so I thought.

With no energy to stop at the grocery store, I knew I had two choices: make due with what I had, or order in. With Google on my side, I found a recipe for roasted curried cauliflower. No blanching, no peeling, stir once or twice, done in 35 minutes—I hit the nail on the head.

And if you have a somewhat-extensive spice cabinet, a head of cauliflower and an onion, you don't have to go to the store, either. (This recipe is adapted from a recipe that appeared in Bon Appetit in September 2004.)

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