Some of my non-Indian friends complain that my recipes are too complicated and/or call for too many ingredients that they don’t have in their kitchens and/or take too long to pull together. This is weakness and I don’t usually like to reward weakness but here, anyway, is a very simple recipe for cauliflower roasted with spices. There’s minimal prep work and once the oven is at temperature it takes only 20 fuss-free minutes to be ready to eat. Never say I never did anything for you, you ungrateful bastards.
This is, again, a hybrid recipe that deploys Indian spices and an American approach to vegetables. The resulting flavour is very North Indian though.
- Cauliflower, 2lbs.
- Ghee or olive oil, 1 tblspn
- The following ground together into a coarse powder: 1/4-1 tspn hot chilli powder, a 1 inch piece of cinnamon, 1 tspn cumin seeds, 1/2 tspn turmeric powder
- Half a lime
- Set the oven to 400ºF.
- While the oven is heating up make the spice powder and break the cauliflower into small florets.
- Place the florets in a large baking dish that can hold almost all of them in one layer, add the ghee/oil and toss to coat and then add the spice powder and salt and toss to coat.
- Once the oven is ready bung the baking dish in, uncovered, for 20-30 minutes.
- At the end of the cooking time remove the cauliflower to a serving dish, squeeze the lime over, toss and serve.
- One teaspoon of hot chilli powder will yield a pretty hot result. Feel free to dial it down significantly. I’d say that if you’re eating this alongside dal and rice and other blander dishes then make it hotter; but if there are other spicy dishes on the table, dial it down.
- At whatever heat setting you choose this would also go well with a simple roasted chicken. If you’re roasting your chicken at 400ºF too then just pop this into the oven with 20 minutes to go.
- You could garnish the finished dish with a bit of chopped dhania/cilantro at the end too, I suppose.
- After 20 minutes the cauliflower is still nice and crunchy. You can go a little longer if you like, but don’t go too far past 30 minutes else you’ll risk scorching the spices.
- An alternative simple spice mix: salt, turmeric, mild chilli powder, garam masala and amchur (mango powder).
- It’s even better if roasted in a cast iron pan.