Saturday, April 26, 2014

Saucy Nepalese Spiced Cauliflower and Potatoes (a spin on Aloo Gobi)

You know what I love? Love a whole lot? Crabapple trees blooming in spring. The smell, the color, they are wonderful. I also love my new outdoor nook, where I have spent the past few nights reading well into the darkness, utterly charmed by the glow of my solar lanterns and coyotes howling in the distance. What an idyllic little spring. If you haven't gotten the picture by now, I am really loving this spring. I didn't know I loved spring this much before. But oh how I do.

I'm also spending more time outdoors, which means I want delicious food quickly. This saucy Nepalese spiced cauliflower and potato dish, inspired by Aloo Gobi found at Nepalese restaurants, fits the bill. It's vegetarian and as satisfying and hearty as any meat based main dish. While we do love a good hamburger, we try to eat a plant based diet because it's better for this planet, of which I'm quite fond. I have been on an Indian, Thai, and Nepalese food kick of late, because all of it packs big flavor without relying on cheese and bread. And while I love cheese and bread more than most, sometimes I have to practice a little moderation. Sometimes.

This dish is filled with spices and a touch of honey for some sweetness. The cauliflower and potatoes make it hearty and satisfying. Plus, it only takes about 30 minutes to prepare, which means we all can spend a little more time outside enjoying what spring has to offer.

Saucy Indian Spiced Cauliflower and Potatoes
Serves 4

1 tbs olive oil
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbs ginger, minced
1 serrano pepper, diced
1 1/2 tbs garam masala (1/2 tsp coriander, 1 tsp cumin, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp clove, 1/4 tsp cardamon)
1/2 tsp turmeric
2 medium russet potatoes, peeled and chopped into bite sized pieces
1 small head of cauliflower, florets cut into bite sized pieces
1 cup water
1 can of diced tomatoes (14.5 oz)
2 tbs tomato paste
2 tbs honey
1/4 cup greek yogurt
Salt and pepper to taste

To serve
1 cup rice, prepared according to package directions

Get your rice started.

Heat olive in a saute pan over medium heat. Add garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant, 1-2 minutes. Add the serrano pepper and cook another 2-3 minutes, until softened. Add the garam masala and turmeric and cook 1-2 minutes.

To the pan add the potatoes, cauliflower, water, tomatoes, tomato paste, and honey. Reduce heat to medium and cook 15-20 minutes until the vegetables have softened. Add the greek yogurt and season with salt and pepper to taste.

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