Stir Fried Cauliflower and Potato/ Phool Kobi ane Bateta nu Shaak
What is Cauliflower?
Did you know that the name cauliflower originates from the Italian name cavolfiore which means cabbage flower? Belonging to the species Brassica Oleracea, only the head or what is sometimes referred to as the curd (as it looks similar to curd cheese) is eaten. By the way, did you know that cauliflower belongs to the same group as cabbage, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, kale, collard green and the group is sometimes referred to as ‘cole’ crops. Believed to originate from Cyprus, cauliflower is an autumn/winter crop.
Growing up, the only colour of cauliflower I’d seen was white. Sometimes, the stem would be a bit purplish but that I learnt was due to over exposure to the sun when the cauliflower is growing. Coincidently, a visit to Montreal during Autumn and the famous open market Jean Talon is where I saw green, orange and purple cauliflowers for the first time. Of course I couldn’t believe my eyes at how colorful the cauliflowers looked. Suddenly, cauliflower became a vegetable of interest for me. Usually, I’m not a huge fan of cauliflower. If you ever come across colorful cauliflowers, make sure you include it in your diet.
- Orange is rich in beta-carotene therefore rich in Vitamin A
- Purple is rich in anthocyanin a valuable antioxidant
- Green Cauliflower also known as broccoflower is richer in beta-carotene than white ones.
Cauliflower – A Superfood
With so many health benefits, cauliflower is considered a superfood.
- Its high in fibre
- Low in calories
- An excellent source of Vitamins and Minerals, – contains mostly all the vitamins and minerals required
- Rich in sulforaphane, prevents growth of cancer cells and reduces high blood pressure
- High in antioxidants which help in reducing inflammation and protecting against chronic diseases like heart diseases. Its also believed to be valuable in fighting growth of cancer cells.
- Its a rich source of choline. Choline helps in synthesizing DNA, brain development and production of neurotransmitters.
A Low Carb alternate to Grains
With the Keto diet becoming increasingly popular, cauliflower is used to replace grains like rice, wheat, millets in producing dishes to fit a Keto diet. It replaces rice like the Chinese Cauliflower Rice, my sister’s recipe. These days its used to make pizza base, tortilla, replaces potato to make mash, replaces chickpeas to make hummus and replaces pasta to make the famous Mac and Cheese.
How to include Cauliflower in your diet
Cauliflower as such is pretty tasteless on its own. It doesn’t have any particular flavour or smell which makes it very versatile to include in a variety of dishes. I like to prepare healthy starters like Grilled Cauliflower IndoChinese Style. As for my favorite soup with cauliflower, it is Cauliflower and Chickpea Soup. Adding grated cauliflower with paneer as a paratha filling was a great way to get my kids to eat cauliflower, like in Palak Paneer Parathas. In addition to this making side dishes, sabji or shaak with cauliflower is an excellent way include this superfood in your daily meal. Prepare Masala Cauliflower, or Kadhai Gobi with yogurt. Incidentally, cauliflower pairs so well with cheese that I love to serve Cauliflower Soup with cheddar. With cauliflower in season I have to make baked cauliflower soon.
Stir Fried Cauliflower and Potato/Phool Kobi ane Bateta nu Shaak
Known as Phool Gobi in Hindi and Phool Kobi in Gujarati, its usually paired with peas (like the way Aruna makes Gobi Matar Fry ) or potatoes or both to make a simple and yet a healthy side dish(sabji,shaak) to go with hot rotis. Whenever I make this simple stir fry, it takes me more time to chop the florets into tiny tiny florets than for it to cook. What I seriously hate is overcooked cauliflower, so this side dish is cooked in such a way that the cauliflower has a bit of a bite. In addition to serving this simple shaak with hot rotis, I like to include a lentil dish like Moong Dal Tadka.
- Gluten Free
- Vegan friendly
- Satvik friendly
- For a Keto option, use olive oil or a bit of ghee, don’t add potatoes and sugar.
STIR FRIED CAULIFLOWER AND POTATO/PHOOL KOBI ANE BATETA NU SHAAK
1½ – 2 cups (approx 250g) finely chopped cauliflower
1 large potato, peeled and finely chopped
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp lemon juice
¼ tsp turmeric powder
1 tbsp sesame seeds
1 tsp ginger paste
½ tsp chilli paste or 1 chilli finely chopped
¼ tsp sugar, optional
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp oil
1 tsp coriander and cumin powder (dhana jiru)
2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
¼ tsp asafoetida or hing
- Put the oil in a frying pan or wok (kadhai). Heat it over medium flame.
- When it is hot, add the mustard, cumin and sesame seeds. When they begin to pop, add the hing, turmeric powder, ginger and chilli paste. Saute for a few seconds.
- Add the cauliflower and potatoes. Mix well. Add the salt, mix and cover the pan.
- Cook on low flame till the vegetables are just done and not over cooked. It usually takes about 5 to 7 minutes to cook.
- Switch off the heat. Add the sugar, coriander cumin powder and lemon juice. Mix well.
- Add the fresh coriander just before serving.
- Coriander and cumin powder or dhana jiru as its called is a combination of roasted coriander seeds and cumin seeds.3 parts of coriander to 1 part of cumin. Grind together in a coffee grinder and store in an airtight jar.
- Can add finely chopped cashew nuts to this sabji.
- Use the leftover sabji as a filling for a toasted sandwich or make stuffed parathas.
- Adjust the seasonings according to your taste.
- Try and make this shaak just 5 or 10 minutes before you need to serve. If you must make it ahead, then remove the cover of the pan till it cools down. If you leave it covered, the vegetable will become mushy.
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