Serious Eats: Recipes
Dinner Tonight: Roasted Cauliflower with Indian Spices
More than those of any other cuisine, Indian recipes seem to transform vegetables. Even without an animal product in sight, a curry can manage to taste meaty. You never get up from the table thinking, "That could have been more flavorful," if the recipe is prepared correctly. And this is nowhere more apparent than with cauliflower, which is generally insipid raw, but deeply satisfying once cooked with plenty of spices and caramelization. It's in the running for "meatiest" vegetable around.
I adapted this recipe from Martha Rose-Shulman's book The Very Best Recipes for Health, drawn in part from her column on the New York Times website, which I've used in the past for ideas. Though she calls for steaming the cauliflower, I opted to roast it to add another dimension of flavor, but stuck with her spice profile of ginger, turmeric, cayenne, and cumin. The key is allowing the spices plenty of time to marry their flavors in the oil before adding other ingredients. This is where that magical "curry" flavor emerges, greater than the sum of its parts.