Kauli Aloo (Cauliflower Potatoes) is one of the signature dishes of Nepal. I can even go as far as saying that this dish is prepared at least twice a week in a common Nepali Household. It's a dish that reminds us how simple it is diligently combine spices and ingredients to turn these simple yet delicious ingredients into a magic on a plate. Here is a simple preparation for Kauli Aloo.
- 1 cauliflower
- Finely Chopped cauliflower leaves
- 3 red potatoes diced
- 2 plum tomatoes finely chopped
- 1 red onion finely chopped
- 1/2 cup of green peas
- 3 green chilly (sliced in half)
- 3 cloves of garlic finely chopped
- Half ginger finely chopped
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 3-4 clove
- 2-3 bay leaves or curry leaves
- 1/2 tea spoon of cumin & fenugreek seeds
- 1/2 table spoon of cumin powder
- 1/2 tea spoon of turmeric powder
- 1/2 table spoon of coriander powder
- 1/2 tea spoon of sugar
- 1/2 tea spoon of Amchur Powder (Mango Powder) Optional
- 1 tea spoon of curry powder
- Salt & Pepper (Taste)
In hot pan add some oil. When the oil is hot add cinnamon stick, cloves and bay leaves. After the ingredients turn brown you can take these ingredients out of the pan. This procedure flavors the oil. You can leave these in however, sometimes when you bite into it you get an intense flavor that some people don't like.
Add cumin seeds and fenugreek seeds. As it turns dark brown add you chilies, chopped garlic and half of chopped ginger. Cook it for about a minute on medium - low heat. Fry your onions and add pinch of salt and half tea spoon of sugar. Salt helps to take the water out of the onions and sugar caramelizes the onions. Also sugar acts as a binding agent and mixes the ingredients well.
After the onions turn brown, add your ground spices - Turmeric powder, Cumin & Coriander powder, Amchur powder, Curry powder (make sure when you add these spices the heat is medium low because you don't want to burn these spices. Cook for about a minute.
When you spice mixture is cooked add the potatoes and tomatoes. If you need to add some water and cover the pan to cook the potatoes. Add salt & pepper for taste. Don't add too much water (about half a cup is more than enough). Cook for about 5-8 minutes in medium - low heat.
When the potatoes are half cooked (take a fork and pierce a potato to see it consistency), add the cauliflowers. Mix the ingredients very slowly as you don't want to break the cauliflowers. Add little water if needed. Cook for about 4-5 minutes on medium low heat. A secret to a good cauliflower curry also depends on how you cut the cauliflowers. Remember treat the cauliflower like a flower and be gentle with it. Rather than slicing the cauliflower into pieces, take a small knife and cut the branches and use your hands to separate the pieces. Its like picking a flower :)
Then add your cauliflower leaves. A lot of us have the tendency of throwing out the leaves. The leaves add a very delicate yet intense flavor of cauliflower. Adding this goes a long way in flavoring the dish. Cook for about 2 minutes.
Now add your green peas, rest of the chopped garlic and mix the ingredients together. If needed add some salt at this point. Cover the lid and cook for another 2-3 minutes or until the cauliflowers are tender.
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