Tuesday, 12 June 2007

Jo bhi bane gobhi...

(subzi subtitle: whatever becomes of the cauliflower.)

Actually, it's "phool-gobhi" ( फूलगोभी), quite literally "cabbage (gobhi) flower (phool)" but if you keep the "phool" and mention just "gobhi" in Indian cuisine, most of the time, people will assume you're talking about cauliflower instead of cabbage.

Months back, Aloo Gobhi (potatoes & cauliflower) reared its pretty little head here, but I didn't provide a decent description or recipe then, and am back to remedy that. I'm no authority, but there are loads of ways to prepare cauliflower with potatoes and they will still be legitimately named "aloo gobhi", but I'll just concentrate on the recipe that I like best, based on this one, with a few tips and tweaks.

How to (for 4): Break up half a cauliflower into evenly-sized florets and boil for about 4 minutes. Flush cauliflower with cold water so that the florets don't oxydise and darken.

I stuck to the first ingredient list, but my spice paste varied according to what I had in the fridge, and goes like this:

several tbsp of desiccated coconut
1/2 cup chopped coriander
1/2 cup chopped green onion
4 green chillis
1/2 tsp grated ginger
4 plump cloves of garlic
about 4 - 5 small spring onions
50ml water

The rest of the steps are just as in the recipe. Notice how they didn't mention salt? Yeah, I always get tricked in this way when making curries! With so many ingredients to juggle, who ever remembers the salt?

Variations: I see the same spice paste working well with cabbage or peas but the name will not be the same...

Body Count: 0


I've never been to Calcutta but by the grace of Google, could not remain ignorant of this intriguing fusion dish called Gobhi Manchurian... I gathered from various sources that seeking an authentic recipe for this will merely set one up for major disappointment, and that the gist of it is to marry Indian and Chinese flavours, so here's my own contribution to the mass of recipes out there:

How to (for 4): Break up half a cauliflower into evenly-sized florets and boil for about 4 minutes. Flush cauliflower with cold water so that the florets don't oxydise and darken (sounds familiar? heh heh).

Make a thick batter with wheat & rice flours (3 parts to one?), salt, turmeric, baking soda and water to get preferred consistency. Heat oil for deep-frying, dip florets in batter and deep fry. Set aside.

Sauce - Finely chop 1 onion, 2 green + 2 red chillis and 4 cloves of garlic, grate ginger to get 1/2 a tsp and snip some green onions to get half a cup. Heat 2 tbsps each of sesame oil and corn oil and fry onion, garlic and ginger until the onion softens and the raw smell of the ginger fades. Add 1/2 cup of ketchup and a few splashes of soya sauce and stir well. Add in green onions.

These cauliflower fritters mollify very quickly, so it's best to eat them fast. I did, however, bake them after deep-frying them, and they stayed crispy though only for a very brief while...

You can serve gobhi manchurian either with the sauce as a chunky dip on the side:

or mix everything together - soggy satisfaction guaranteed!

Variations: Batter - add chilli powder for more zing, cumin for more fragrance, corn flour and/or besan instead of rice flour for more bite. Sauce - fish sauce instead of soya, peanut oil instead of sesame, chopped coriander instead of green onions.

Body Count: 0


Sharmi said...

hey I didnt know you were back!! else would have checked on you long back. missed you for so long. hope you had a nice trip. read your previous posts too. seems you enjoyed a lot.

WokandSpoon said...

More fried snacks to tempt me! I'm on a diet!! I suppose reading food blogs really doesn't help! It all looks great and I like the fact that you can add extra chili

Lydia said...

That Gobhi Manchurian looks like just the kind of dish that could help me over my fear of cauliflower. What a great combination of flavors and textures.

Sandeepa said...

Love all of them, be it aloo-gobi or gobi manchurian. Now I am hungry

Asha said...

LOL @ the title!!
Dishes look great Shilpa.Gobhi Manchurian is a must try:))

tigerfish said...

I din know Aloo Gobhi has got spring onions. Aren't green onion also spring onions - I thought they were the similar and have been using them interchangeably :O
Your Aloo Gobhi looks like green tea ice-cream from afar ;p ..don't blame me- so hot here today...I can only think of ice-cream

Victor said...

The finished product looks like the har lok (prawn fritters) that my late mum used to fry, except I am sure that your version is more healthy, even though it is fried.

Shilpa said...

Hey Sharmi, I was too busy to blog-hop much that's why I kept a low profile, heh heh.. :) Thanks for coming by!

Hi w & s, add anything you want, as long as it's either Indian-ish or Chinese-ish! :)

Hi Lydia, why the cauliflower fear? It doesn't have much taste to begin with.. ;-)

Sandu, you often make me hungry, too!

Thank you, Asha! :) Came up with the title spontaneously, haha!

Tiger, yes, I was referring to spring onions, which I added only because I had some and wanted to see how they'd be in the aloo gobhi. Not bad, as it turns out! :)

Victor, I suppose all fried and battered things have equal artery-clogging potential, haha!

Sia said...

ha ha ha... what a title!!! i love fool gobi...oops i meant phool gobi;)
be it aloo gobi, gobi manchurian(ofcourse indo-chinese;)... thank god!!! looks like u r over with ur "breaking the break" mood;)

Jyothsna said...

Go-gobhi!! Love those dishes!! i make aloo gobhi punjabi style which is a bit different than yours.

Oh, love the music on your blog, makes me dance :))

Also noticed, you're reading the Namesake; me too...finished yet?

Mandira said...

i love both... aloo gobhi and the machurian too... good to see you back. Hope your trip was fun!

Kajal said...

WOW..great work.....thanks for visiting my blog.
Your Gobi manchrian looks delicious with something different way.
Thanks for sharing.:)

Shilpa said...

Dear Sia, sigh, it's the third consecutive rainy weekend, so i'm still at a loss as to what to cook.. :( i do cook, just nothing photogenic worthy of an audience, heh heh.. ;-)

Hi Jyothsna, please do share your method! There are so many ways of cooking aloo gobhi that i'm not sure which is THE authentic punjabi style, so if you have a link to a good recipe, please share!

Thanks, Mandira! I love cauliflower, even the not-so-masaledar versions, so will be back with more someday! :) yes, holiday was fun, too bad it had to end! :(

Thanks, Kajal! I love the stuff on your blog, I just don't have all the equipment that you have, or the ingredients, and most of all, the time and patience!! :)

cheesewithaspoon said...

Aiyo I'm coming here so late this time, you probably won't even read this :-( . But I wanted to say I love Gobi Manchurian, it's one of my favourites, and I even used to buy a ready-made microwavable version of it in the States!! I know, gross, and I usually HATE microwave meals, but I made an exception for that because I love it so.

I also love cauliflower in general. Love to roast it in the oven with a generous sprinkling of Indian spices, yum. More cauliflower recipes please, yes!

Sharmi said...

hello madam where are you??

Shilpa said...


I read everything, I just haven't had time to post much of late, sorry! :(

Ugh, microwavable manchurian? Haha! I'm not above eating the occasional microwaved meal but I was even thinking of doing this again with broccoli! Whaddaya think? I loved the sauce so much I was licking it off my bowl! Thanks for the roasting idea!

Sharmi dear, patience patience! :)

eastcoastlife said...

Cauliflower fritters. hmmmm.... should try it one day, looks nice. Kids might eat them since it's deep fried. :)

Shilpa said...

Hiii ECL!! :) Sorry for not commenting more often on your blog, so terribly busy these days! Haha, yes, I guess this is one way to make kids eat veggies, and get fat, ugh.. can't have it all...

MeltingWok said...

my god, shilpa, the fried cauliflower fritters looked so good. A friend of mine made some the other day, w/o the cauliflowers, its called kuih kodok, Malaysian style, so so good, yums, I'm still craving this now :P

Roopa said...

hi shilpa long time never checked on you i=until i saw at JB post of singapore. Looks like you had very nice holidaying. i too love phool gobi.

Sandeepa said...

Loved your contribution on Jugalbandi. Those pics were fabulous. Ekdum mind blowing :)

Shilpa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shilpa said...

Hi MW!! heh heh, isn't kuih kodok with bananas? quite a different taste altogether! :) I'd love to make the deep-fried cauliflower again but it was the frying part that took up most of my time.. :(

Hi Roopa, thanks for coming by! Oops, I have been bad with blog-hopping for the past 2 months, too! Thanks also for reading my post on jugambandi! :)

Sandeepa dear, thanks, but I can't take the credit at all, I only took the pictures of the temple and the mithai! :) the rest was all Victor's talent! yatharth mein mind blowing! :)