Indian-spiced Roasted Cauliflower with Mint Raitha

A lot of my cooking inspiration comes from the fresh food aisle in the local supermarket. There is never dearth of ideas there. Recently, neatly packed boxes of Jamie Oliver’s products caught my attention; it had raw cauliflower florets, a pack of ready-to-use-spice and mint yoghurt dip. All you have to do is take it home and cook it according to the packet instructions.

Although the idea was cool and convenient, I thought how difficult could it be to actually prep it from the scratch? Well, that was where the idea for this dish came from.

This light, quick, fresh and nutritious appetiser is a burst of flavours. It has interesting flavours that complement cauliflower’s rather unique taste.

While devouring this, I figured that it was a great way to consume this vegetable; it is a great low-carb option for those craving something salty and tasty. What’s more? It is low in fat, high in nutrition and gluten-free (for those of you maintaining a gluten-free) diet.

 

Ingredients for the roasted cauliflower:
Cauliflower – 1 head, cut into small florets
Turmeric powder – ¼ tspn.
Coriander powder – 1 tspn.
Cumin powder – ½ tspn.
Chaat masala – 1 tspn.
Himalayan pink salt/black salt – To taste
Crushed pepper – To taste
Oil – 1 tblspn.
Water – Enough to cook the vegetable
Lemon wedges (optional) – As required
Coriander leaves (chopped) – 1 tblspn.

Ingredients for the mint raitha:
Mint – ½ bunch, stems removed and cleaned.
Green chillies (optional) – 2
Yoghurt – 1 cup
Himalayan pink salt/black salt – To taste
Cumin powder – 1 pinch

Prep:
1. Pre-heat oven at 200*c.
2. Grind mint and green chillies to a smooth paste
3. Line a baking tray with baking paper of aluminium foil to roast cauliflower.

Method for roasted cauliflower:

Blanch cauliflower, and drain the excess water.

Alternatively, place cauliflower florets in a microwave-safe bowl with a little water and microwave on high for 90 seconds to 1 minute.

Drain all the excess water.

Place the cauliflower florets in a mixing bowl along with the dry spices, salt, pepper and oil to it.

Toss the ingredients well to coat every floret with the spices.

Allow it to marinate for 20 minutes.

Once done, place the marinated florets on the lined baking tray.

Optionally, you could spray or drizzle oil if you feel the cauliflower florets are too dry.

Space them out so they roast well.

Place in the pre-heated oven at 200*c for 20 minutes or until slightly golden.

Once done, remove the tray from the oven and keep aside.

Method for mint raitha:

Whisk yohgurt and keep aside.

Add a little water to thin the yoghurt if you like your raitha not-so-thick.

Grind mint leaves and green chillies to a smooth paste.

Add it to the whisked yoghurt. Season with salt and cumin powder.

Serve the roasted cauliflower with mint raitha and lemon wedges.

Remember to sprinkle the chopped coriander leaves for a bit of freshness.

Tips:

– The same method works for broccoli as well. You could either make an exclusive roasted broccoli or mix it with cauliflower.
– Add/omit spices to suit your taste.
– Oven performances vary; adjust time and temperature accordingly. Ensure the cauliflower does not burn.
– For a crispier texture, you could briefly pan roast the marinated cauliflower florets before placing it in the oven.
– If you do not prefer marination, you could skip that step and just mix the spices with the cauliflower florets and oven roast them.
– If you do not like pairing it with mint raitha, you could dip it with chutnies, pickles or other raithas of your choice.

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