Sautéed Cauliflower and Green Peas
GOBHI HARI MATAR SABJI
-Recipe from Yamuna mataji
In all cauliflower dishes, the quality of the vegetable is paramount.
Look for crisp, tightly packed white flowerets and bright green leaves.
It is important to cut the flowerets into uniform pieces, but the
success of the dish really lies in slow, gentle braising; the
cauliflower cooks in its own juice and seasonings until the flowerets
are butter-soft and the stems tender-crisp. Garden-fresh peas are in a
class of their own, but good-quality frozen baby peas are sometimes
better than “fresh” peas from the store, and certainly much less work.
This type of dry cauliflower dish is popular for a simple lunch
throughout Uttar Pradesh.
Preparation time (after assembling ingredients): 10 minutes
Cooking time: 25- 30 minutes
Serves: 4 or 5
4 table spoons (60 ml) ghee or vegetable oil
½ table spoon (7 ml) scraped, finely shredded or minced fresh ginger root
1 ¼ teaspoons (6 ml) cumin seeds
8 – 10 curry leaves or 1 bay leaf
1 large cauliflower (about 3 pounds/1.5 kg), trimmed, cored and cut into flowerets 1 ½ * 1 * ½ inches (4 * 2.5 * 1.5 cm)
½ teaspoon (2 ml) turmeric
¼ teaspoon (1 ml) paprika or cayenne pepper
3 table spoons (45 ml) chopped fresh coriander, parsley or chervil
1 cup (240 ml) fresh peas (about 1 pound/455 g in pods) or frozen baby peas, defrosted
2-4 table spoons (5 ml) salt
1/3 cup (80ml) plain yogurt, sour cream or cream
Brazil nut curls or parsley sprigs for garnish (optional)
In a heavy 5-quart/liter nonstick saucepan, heat the ghee or oil
over moderately high heat until it is hot but not smoking. Fry the
cumin seeds until they brown, then drop in the curry leaves or bay
leaf, and in a few seconds stir in the cauliflower. Sprinkle with
turmeric, paprika or cayenne and half of the fresh herb. Stir-fry until
the cauliflower is lightly browned. Add the fresh peas and 2-4 table
spoons (30-60 ml) of water, cover and reduce the heat to low. Stirring
occasionally, cook for 15-20 minutes or until the cauliflower is
tender. If you are using frozen peas, drain well and add for the last
3-4 minutes of cooking.
2. Before serving, mix in
the salt, remaining herb and yogurt, sour cream or cream. If desired,
garnish each serving with Brazil nut curls or parsley spigs.