This might sound like a strange, unusual combination, but trust me on this one when I say this recipe is really good, though of a different kind. It is a homey, no fancy quick dish and I promise I did not make this up, but my dida (grandma) did. So it is a hand me down recipe from a trusted source.
Many years back probably when the Indian Chinese cuisine had just started gaining momentum in India, dida decided to experiment with soy sauce which became available on the shelves of even small grocery stores. However Indian soy sauce is denser and darker than we get on the shelves here in US. The flavors are a bit different too, strong and deep.
May be you are still not convinced. But the best way to find out, if you would like (or not like it) is to give it a try. I love this recipe. It could also be the thing of acquired taste, for the hubby prefers Aloo Gobi to this. Which is okay. I would say, it is a wise idea to have multiple recipes in the repertoire, just in case you get bored with one.
Cauliflower is a very versatile vegetable and I can safely say that it is probably pretty much well loved one in our family. Cauliflower absorbs and retains a lot flavor, and is a really good candidate for a marination and then a roast kind of recipe.
The blend of yogurt and soy sauce might raise some eyebrows here, but the soy sauce actually lends a very very subtle flavor and is what makes this dish different from the usual yogurt, ginger, garlic combination so popular in Indian cuisine. Vinegar keeps the cauliflower from breaking down and getting mushy and the florets remain almost crunchy with a nice wholesome bite.
Pan Fried Cauliflower with Yogurt and Soy Sauce
Ingredients: (serves 4-6 as side)
- 1 medium head cauliflower, broken into medium florets
- 1 medium onion, coarsely grated
- 5 big cloves of garlic, minced
- 1.5 inch fresh ginger, peeled and grated
- 5 fresh green chili peppers, thinly sliced (adjust amount to taste, or remove membrane and seeds for less spicy)
- 1/2 cup thick drained yogurt or Greek yogurt
- 1/4-1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/2 tablespoon vinegar
- 1.5 tablespoon lite soy sauce/or tamari sauce (use gluten free for a wheat free version)
- a sprinkle of red crushed pepper (Optional)
- scant 1/4 cup oil
Wash and drain the cauliflower florets. In a big bowl combine yogurt, grated onion, minced ginger and garlic, chili peppers, salt, turmeric, vinegar, salt, soy sauce and red crushed pepper. Stir well with a spatula so it is well combined.
Add the cauliflower florets in the the bowl and toss really well for the marinade to coat the cauliflower florets. Let them sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.
Heat oil in a wok/skillet till it shimmers. Add the marinated cauliflowers and everything else in the bowl in the hot oil. Cook at high heat covered for about 10 minutes. Uncover and cook at medium heat till the oil starts to separate from the spice mix. If the spice mix sticks to bottom, add a splash of warm water and scrape out the pan. The cauliflower florets should be cooked through, but still hold the crunch. Some of the onions might crisp. There should be no sauce left. Whatever spice mix is there in the pan, should kind of coat the florets.
Serve warm as a side.
Sending this recipe to Lisa’s Celebration of Indian Food!