• 3 lbs. cauliflower
  • ½ cup freshly grated coconut
  • 2 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 5 tbsp vegetable oil
  • ½ cup raw cashews
  • 1 hot green chile
  • 1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice


1. Cut cauliflower flowerets in such a way than no piece is longer than 1-1/2 inches and no wider at the head than 3/4 inch. Longer stems, if tender, may be peeled and sliced into rounds.
2. Put the coconut into a small heated cast-iron skillet over a medium flame. Dry-roast the coconut, stirring frequently until lightly browned, then empty into a bowl.
3. Put sesame seeds into the same skillet and roast, shaking the skillet frequently over a medium flame, until sesame seeds are lightly browned. Empty into bowl with coconut.
4. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in the same skillet over a medium flame. Add the cashews. Fry, stirring, until cashews turn a light brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and put them with the coconut and sesame seeds. Turn off heat.
5. Empty contents of bowl into the container of an electric blender or a food processor. Add 2/3 cup water and the sliced green chili. Blend until you have a smooth paste.
6. Heat 4 tablespoons of oil in a large, heavy skillet over a medium-high flame. When very hot, add the mustard seeds. As soon as they begin to pop (this will happen almost immediately), put in the cauliflower. Stir the cauliflower around on medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes: some of the flowerets should pick up a few brown specks. Now add the paste from the blender, 1-1/4 cups water, the salt, sugar, and lemon juice. Stir to mix. Bring to a boil. Cover. Lower heat and simmer gently about 10 to 15 minutes or until cauliflower is cooked through but still a bit crisp. Stir now and then during the cooking.




Madhur Jaffrey


4 servings




Asian : Southern : Indian



preparation times

• Start to finish: 1 Hour 45 Minutes