Satyamma's Famous Cauliflower Curry

Source: The Moosewood Cookbook by Mollie Katzen

Time: 30-40 minutes to prepare
Yield: 8 servings


  • 3 cups basmati rice
  • 4 1/2 cups water
  • 2 three-inch diameter potatoes, cut into small chunks

Spice Paste:

  • 1 Tbsp mustard seeds
  • 3 med cloves garlic
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp fresh ginger (slice into thin rounds to break up the strings)
  • 1/2 c lightly toasted peanuts
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves or allspice
  • 2 Tbsp toasted cumin seeds
  • 1-2 Tbsp toasted sesame seeds
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne
  • 1/2 c water (more, as needed)
  • Optional: 1/2 c shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 1-2 Tbsp peanut oil
  • 1 1/2 c chopped onion
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 large cauliflower, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 med carrot, thinly sliced
  • Optional: 1 c cooked chick peas
  • Optional: 1 c raisins and/or cashews
  • 3-4 Tbsp lemon juice


  • Lemon or orange slices
  • Toasted nuts (cashews)
  • Toasted coconut
  • Raisins
  • Sliced tomatoes
  • Chutney


Begin cooking the rice with the water. Boil the potatoes until just tender. Drain and set aside. Place the spice paste ingredients in a blender and puree until fairly homogeneous. Add extra water as needed to form a soft workable paste.

Heat oil in skillet and add onion and salt. Saute for 5 minutes over medium heat, then add cauliflower and carrot and mix well. Cover and cook about 10 minutes, then add the paste. Mix well. Cook, covered, over low heat until the cauliflower is tender, stirring every few minutes. Add more water, if necessary, to prevent sticking.

Add potatoes, chickpeas, raisins, cashews, and lemon juice, and cook a few more minutes. Taste to adjust salt, and serve hot, with rice and condiments.