Cauliflower Masala

Indian cuisine does some amazing things with vegetables and with cauliflower in particular. One of my favorite vegetarian cooking sites is Veg Recipes of India. This recipe is adapted from her “Gobi Masala” (Gobi = cauliflower).

Cauliflower Masala

Recipe by StefanieCourse: MainCuisine: IndianDifficulty: Medium


Prep time


Cooking time


Total time




  • 1 large (or 2 small) cauliflower heads, chopped into florets

  • 4 cloves garlic, minced

  • 2 Tbsp minced ginger

  • 2 tomatoes

  • 3 Tbsp whole cashews, divided

  • 4 Tbsp vegetable oil, divided

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 1/2 tsp caraway seeds

  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced

  • 1 tsp ground coriander

  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin

  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper

  • 1/2 tsp garam masala

  • 1/4 tsp turmeric

  • 4 Tbsp Greek yogurt

  • 1 – 1 1/2 cups water

  • 1/3 cup cream

  • Pinch of nutmeg


  • Fill a medium pot with 3 cups of salted water and bring to a boil. Turn off heat and add cauliflower. Cover and set aside.
  • Meanwhile, place tomatoes, 2 Tbsp cashews, and 1/2 cup water in a blender and blend on high until it forms a paste.
  • Heat 2 Tbsp oil in a wok on medium-low until shimmering. Drain caulflower well and add to wok. Sauté for 8-10 minutes, until cauliflower starts browning. Remove from wok and set aside.
  • Add remaining oil to wok and heat until shimmering. Add bay leaf and caraway seeds until aromatic, 30 seconds.
  • Add onions and sauté until lightly golden.
  • Add ginger and garlic and sauté until aromatic, 30 seconds.
  • Stir in tomato-cashew paste. Add coriander, cumin, red pepper flakes, garam masala and turmeric.
  • Cook, stirring frequently, until masala paste starts to form a thick paste and oil starts to separate, 12-14 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and whisk in yogurt. Whisk in water as necessary to create a medium gravy.
  • Return wok to medium heat and add cauliflower. Salt to taste.
  • Bring to a boil, reduce heat to maintain simmer. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until cauliflower is tender, 10-15 minutes. Add water as necessary.
  • Stir in cream and nutmeg. Serve immediately with rice or naan.


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