meatless mondays . #3 {indian}

For years, “I don’t like Indian food” was my response each time it was suggested by friends as a lunch or dinner option. Until one day I gave in to lunch at Tabla in NYC and discovered it wasn’t Indian food I disliked, it was bad Indian food.  Sadly, Tabla closed its doors on December 30th but am thankful Chef Cardoz provided the opportunity to convert me to a lover of Indian cuisine.  While he works with the Union Square Hospitality Group to open a new restaurant later this year, of one thing I am certain…he and Danny Meyer will have another hit on their hands.  What Tabla started, Tyler Florence capped.  After watching his show one Saturday I decide to jump in and make an Indian dinner with lamb curry as its centerpiece.  Made way too much for two people so invited some friends over.  When one said, “This is the best thing you’ve ever made,” I was floored.  So why not make a great Indian dish for Meatless Monday?  After today’s meal there will most likely be a few more in the remaining 49 weeks.   Tonight’s dinner included spiced cauliflower stir fry, cucumber raita, and stewed okra.   The cauliflower recipe, adapted from Ross Dobson’s cookbook Market Vegetarian [which I highly recommend]  follows.   Recipes for the last two dishes may be found by clicking on the photos. 

spiced cauliflower stir fry
serves 4

½ head cauliflower, cut into large florets   .   2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp tumeric   .   2 tsp curry powder   .   3 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp brown mustard seeds  .  1 onion, sliced   .   1 small red bell pepper, sliced
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger   .   2 garlic cloves, minced   .   1 large green chile, sliced
½ cup vegetable stock   .   2 tomatoes, chopped   .   1 cup frozen peas

Toss the cauliflower, cumin, tumeric and curry powder in a bowl making sure the spices evenly coat the cauliflower.  Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat adding the spiced cauliflower and mustard seeds.  Cook for 8-10 mins turning often. Add the onion and bell pepper; cook 5 mins.  Add the ginger, garlic and chile; fry for 1 minute then add the stock, tomatoes and peas.  Reduce heat and simmer gently for 10 mins or until the vegetables are tender.  This dish is lovely served over basmati rice.

cucumber raita


stewed okra and tomatoes

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