Saturday, May 29, 2010

Baked Cauliflower in a Creamy Sauce

I know there are some people who don't like cauliflower because of the smell which is common to vegetables like these including cabbage, broccoli etc. These are called cruciferous vegetables because they are grown from stalks that are cross shaped sectionally. The smell, however, is due to chemicals ( in particular sulphur compunds) which have been shown to lower the risk of cancer. These chemicals stimulate the production of enzymes which are now known to break down carcinogens and thus aid in preventing cancer. Who would have thought huh?

I personally like cauliflower a lot - whether cooked with potatoes Punjabi style to make Aloo Gobhi or put into a South Indian kurma with other vegetables. Cauliflower is a very accomodating vegetable and shares space very easily with other vegetables. However, it becomes a little monotonous to have the same recipes every week, so I try to move things around a bit by changing the way we eat the same vegetable.

This was one attempt at doing that - cauliflower made in a kind of casserole to go with a potato bread I had made earlier that morning. For something which rustled up so quickly, it had lots of flavour and was a good match with the crusty bread. Definitely a must-try - the chicken soup can be substituted with any other thick soup like Cream of Mushroom. The top becomes a little bit crusty while the inside stays creamy.

1 medium Cauliflower

1 onion chopped fine
1" ginger - finely chopped
3 cloves garlic finely chopped
green chillies - 2 sliced

2 tomatoes finely chopped
salt to taste
red chilli powder - 1 tsp
Coriander powder - 1/2 tsp

Oil - 1 tbsp

1/2 packet Knorr Chicken Delite Soup dissolved in 350ml water
1 1/2 cubes grated cheese (about 3/4 cup)
1/4 cup chopped coriander

1. Cut away the hard stems of the cauliflower and immerse it whole into salted water for about 10 minutes. (This will get any bugs/worms out)
2. Wash the cauliflower and separate into small florets, cutting with a knife if necessary.
3. Heat the oil in a pan and add the garlic, ginger and green chillies and saute for few seconds, put in the onion and saute till translucent and soft.
4. Add the chilli powder and coriander powder and saute, then add tomatoes and salt and cook till pulpy. (go easy on the salt because the soup mixture will have some)
5. Add the cauliflower , cover and cook for about 5-8 minutes till half cooked.
6. Pour in the dissolved soup mixture and bring to boil and cook for about a minute. Pre heat the oven to 190C
7. Add the grated cheese (reserving about 2 tbsp for the topping) and the coriander and turn off.
8. Pour the cauliflower into a casserole, sprinkle the grated cheese over it and bake for 15 minutes.


Cham said...

Other than gratin, i never made any one pot dish! This one fits perfectly my tastebuds!

Arch said...

Sounds interesting - i like cauliflower too...nice flavours here..

Mallugirl said...

my DH doesn't like cauliflower!! will try ur way and see if he converts.

Parita said...

I love baked casserole type dishes and this looks fantastic!

Rajani said...

nice cauliflower casserole! i actually love baked cauliflower in something creamy!