Sunday, November 7, 2010

indian spiced cauliflower and sweet potatoes

Some culinary inventions are born from trial and error, others from accidents. This was more a case of convenience—two languishing sweet potatoes that I thought might make a tasty riff on Aloo Gobi. Suspicions confirmed.

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Indian Spiced Cauliflower and Sweet Potatoes
Adapted from Gourmet

1 head cauliflower, cut into 3/4-inch-wide florets
2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
5 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
Kosher salt
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 teaspoons minced fresh jalapeño, seeds optional
2 teaspoons minced peeled fresh ginger
1 teaspoon freshly ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 cup water
Lemon wedges, for serving

Put oven rack in upper third of oven and place a shallow baking pan on rack. Preheat oven to 475 degrees.

Toss cauliflower and sweet potatoes together in a bowl with olive oil (enough to lightly coat), cumin seeds, and salt. Spread in hot baking pan and roast, stirring occasionally, until cauliflower is tender and browned in spots and potatoes are just tender, about 20 minutes. (I gave the sweet potatoes a little extra time.)

While vegetables are roasting, cook onion, garlic, jalapeño, and ginger in 2 tablespoons oil in a large heavy skillet over moderate heat, stirring frequently, until very soft and beginning to turn golden, 8 to 10 minutes. Add ground cumin, coriander, turmeric, cayenne, and 1/2 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring constantly, 2 minutes. Stir in water, scraping up any brown bits from bottom of skillet, then stir in roasted vegetables. Cook, covered, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes. Check for seasoning and serve.

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