Meatless Monday: Gingery Cauliflower Curry

This entry was posted on Apr 9, 2018 by Charlotte Bell.

Gingery Cauliflower Curry

Do you like ginger? If so, this cauliflower curry is for you. I’ve been cooking meatlessly for decades, including lots of recipes that include minced ginger. But these recipes generally call for a tablespoon or two at the most. I did a double take when I saw 1/2 cup of minced ginger in this recipe’s ingredient list. Good thing I love ginger.

One thing I love about cooking Indian-style food is the opportunity to try new flavors. This cauliflower curry uses a spice that I didn’t have in my cabinet—amchoor or amchur, dried green mango powder. Its sweet, fruity flavor truly elevated this already tasty curry. You can find it at any Indian grocery store or you can order it online. The other less common spice in the recipe is asafoetida or hing, a bitter spice. Again, it’s available at Indian grocery stores, at some Whole Foods locations or online.

The original recipe calls for snap peas, which I couldn’t find anywhere just yet. I substituted green beans instead with good results. Also, because the recipe makes a ton of food, we enjoyed it with brown basmati rice the first time around and I made rainbow quinoa the second time.

Once you’ve finished the prep work, this dish goes together pretty fast. Most of the prep is pretty easy, but it does take a while to peel all that ginger. Once it was peeled, I minced the ginger in batches in a mini food processor, which saved a whole lot of time.

When a recipe calls for lots of spices, as all Indian food does, I like to mix them all up beforehand so that I can just dump them into the dish when the time comes.

I used half the amount of cayenne in the original recipe and it was still plenty spicy. If you’re a lover of hot and spicy food, you can increase the cayenne. But remember, ginger carries a bit of heat on its own,  so you may not want to go too crazy with the cayenne.

I found this recipe in my go-to vegetarian cookbook: The New Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison.

Meatless Monday: Gingery Cauliflower Curry

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil or ghee
  • 3 tablespoons toasted, ground cumin seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon asafoetida
  • 1/2 cup minced ginger
  • 1 teaspoon toasted, ground coriander seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne (I used 1/4 teaspoon)
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 small head of cauliflower, cut in bite-sized pieces
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons amchoor
  • 1/2 pound sugar snap peas, strings removed; or green beans, tipped and cut in 2-inch pieces
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala

Put It Together: 

  1. Toast whole cumin seeds in a skillet until browned and fragrant. Set aside.
  2. Toast whole coriander seeds in the same skillet until browned and fragrant. Set aside
  3. Grind the cumin and coriander seeds separately in a spice grinder or pound them into a rough powder with a mortar and pestle. Set aside.
  4. Heat the oil or ghee in a wide pot. When it’s hot, add the ground cumin and asafoetida. Stir for about 30 seconds.
  5. Add the ginger, coriander, cayenne and turmeric and stir for about 30 seconds.
  6. Add the onion and cook another 4 minutes, until limp.
  7. Add the cauliflower, salt and 1/2 cup water. Stir to mix everything. Cover and cook for about 10 minutes.
  8. Stir in the peas or beans and cook for another few minutes.
  9. Stir in the amchoor and garam masala.
  10. Serve over your favorite grain.
About Charlotte Bell
Charlotte Bell discovered yoga in 1982 and began teaching in 1986. Charlotte is the author of Mindful Yoga, Mindful Life: A Guide for Everyday Practice and Yoga for Meditators, both published by Rodmell Press. Her third book is titled Hip-Healthy Asana: The Yoga Practitioner’s Guide to Protecting the Hips and Avoiding SI Joint Pain (Shambhala Publications). She writes a monthly column for CATALYST Magazine and serves as editor for Yoga U Online. Charlotte is a founding board member for GreenTREE Yoga, a non-profit that brings yoga to underserved populations. A lifelong musician, Charlotte plays oboe and English horn in the Salt Lake Symphony and folk sextet Red Rock Rondo, whose DVD won two Emmy awards in 2010.