Sunday, 16 September 2018

Easy Sri Lankan Cauliflower Curry

This curry is so easy and quick to make, and it tastes that good you can eat it all by itself, or with the simplest of accompaniments!

I've been going a bit mad for Sri Lankan food at the moment (yes, it probably shows in my blog posts!), and I love to share the things that I love the most!

*** Post in progress, awaiting photos! ***

This cauliflower curry is my adaptation of one I found in a magazine, which I suspected used a variety of spices to replace Sri Lankan roasted curry powder.... so it seemed much simpler to do a bit of tweaking and use Sri Lankan curry powder instead, as it can be used in a variety of other dishes. 

Serves four as a main, or more as a side dish. 265 calories per main portion (with full fat coconut milk), or 214 calories if using light coconut milk.

If you don't want to make your own Sri Lankan curry powder, you can purchase it from Sri Lankan or Asian grocers, or online - I have a Sri Lankan friend who also makes the most delicious roasted curry powder too - see the notes below for more details (and a recipe to make it yourself). Alternatively, if you just want a simple, tasty curry you could use a medium madras curry powder as a substitute.

[Calories in square brackets]
  • 1 whole cauliflower, cut into bite-size pieces including tender leaves (or 600g cauliflower florets) [228]
  • 2 onions, finely diced [82]
  • 1 sprig curry leaves, picked (about 20) [3]
  • 1 tbsp oil e.g. coconut oil (for vegan/dairy free) or ghee [279]
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed [24]
  • 2 inches ginger, grated or finely chopped [7]
  • 2 small green (finger) chillies, finely sliced [2]
  • 1.5 x tbsp Sri Lankan (Ceylon) roasted curry powder (see notes - check gluten free if not home made) [19]
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric [4]
  • 2 large ripe tomatoes, skinned and roughly chopped [16]
  • 250ml coconut milk [385, or 183 for light]
  • 1/2 lime (juice of) [9]
  • Salt

1. Fry the onions and curry leaves in the oil over a low to medium heat, until just starting to turn golden - a non-stick wok is easiest.

2. Add the garlic, ginger and chillies and toss together for half a minute, then add the curry powder, turmeric and a teaspoon of salt and cook out for a couple of minutes.

3. Add the cauliflower, turn the heat up a bit, and stir/toss for about five minutes until the cauliflower has coloured a little and is coated by some of the spices (but still isn't cooked).

4. Add the chopped tomatoes, and cook for another 3 minutes or so, stirring, until starting to break down.

5. Stir in the coconut milk, and simmer until the cauliflower is just tender and cooked to your liking (about 8 minutes or so). Add the juice of half the lime, taste for seasoning, and add further salt if necessary to taste (I add another 1/2 tsp). Enjoy!

Delicious in a dish in its own right, served with rice or hoppers and sambal, or good served as a side, or a selection of curries.

For the roasted Sri Lankan curry powder - to make your own:
[379 calories in total, approximately 19 calories per tbsp/6g]
  • 25g cumin seeds [94]
  • 50g coriander seeds [149]
  • 25g fennel seeds [86]
  • 1 cinammon stick (about 3 inches, or if you won’t be able to grind it use 1 tbsp cinnamon powder) [15]
  • 1 tsp fenugreek seeds [7]
  • ½ tsp cloves [1]
  • Seeds from 10 green cardamom pods (discard the pods) – about ½ tsp [3]
  • 1 tsp black mustard seeds [9]
  • 1 tsp black peppercorns [5]
  • 4 dried long red chillies (shake out the seeds first, if you want a milder curry powder) [10]
If you’re not using pre-made curry powder, then make this first. Gently roast all of the whole spices, by putting them in a dry frying pan, over a low to medium heat and keeping them moving until they have darkened a little and become fragrant. Once you can smell the spices roasting it’s time to remove them elsewhere (out of the frying pan) to cool down. You may wish to do this in batches, and do the dried chillies on their own. Once the spices are roasted and cooled, grind them to a powder (easiest done in an electric spice grinder - you can pick one of these up for about £15, e.g. I use this Andrew James Coffee, Nut and Spice Grinder* which I've had for a few years now, and I've found it very reliable and brilliant for small amounts). This will store for at least three months in an airtight container.
If you're cooking gluten free, and you buy curry powder rather than making your own, make sure you check it's gluten free.
If anyone (in the UK) is interested in buying some Sri Lankan curry powder rather than making their own, I can recommend  the hot version from a lovely Sri Lankan lady I know, called Gayani - you can contact her here for more information about purchasing it (it's called Gold Dust) -

*Affiliate link

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