Sunday, February 3, 2013

Niramish Phulkopi-Alur Daalna

"Phulkopi" (cauliflower) used to be strictly a winter vegetable in my childhood.
We used to wait for the first "phulkopi" of the season. This is unthinkable now!
However.. at the beginning of phulkopi-season, ma used to make simple dishes with "niramish phulkopir daalna matarsuti diye" or "phulkopi alu diye macher jhol"... and by end of the season she used to make many other dishes with different spices and experiments with this vegetable to make it little different in taste! Because by then we got bored of overdose of "phulkopi" :p

Now it's always available at's not a seasonal vegetable anymore. But I miss that waiting ( I sound like having "mina kumari-complex"!!Never mind!). However, I never ate a better "niramish phulkopi-alur daalna" than the one my maa makes :)
Sharing that simple recipe today.

Ingredients for Niramish Phulkopi-Alur Dalna:

  1. Fresh cauliflower 1 medium size (washed and cut into big florets)
  2. Potato 2 medium (cut into big cubes)
  3. Green peas 3/4 cup (fresh or frozen..I used frozen)
  4. Tomato 1 large (chopped)
  5. Ginger 1 and 1/2 inches
  6. Green chilli 2-3 pieces 
  7. Cumin seed 1 table spoon
  8. Coriander Seed 1 teable spoon
  9. Panchforon 1 tea spoon (bengali contains methi, randhuni, kalo jeera, mouri & jeera)
  10. Bay leaf 1 piece
  11. Dry red chilli 1piece
  12. Salt according to taste
  13. Sugar 1 tea spoon (or according to taste)
  14. Turmeric powder (as required)
  15. Chilli powder 1/2 tea spoon
  16. Mustard oil/ vegetable oil  
  17. Ghee/clarified butter 1 tea spoon
How to prepare Niramish Phulkopi-Alur Dalna:
  • Marinate cauliflower and potato separately with salt, turmeric powder and chilli powder for 10-15 minutes.
  • Make a smooth paste together with ginger, green chilli, coriander seed & cumin seed. Use water to make paste ( Maa makes this paste with "shil-nora"/mortar & pestle...I use my food processor). If you face difficulty with pasting cumin and coriander seeds, just make paste with ginger and chillies. And use cumin and coriander powder later (while making gravy...1 tea spoon each). But honestly speaking I prefer using pasted spices at least for these kind of special dishes.
  • Heat oil in a pan. Fry cauliflower till they get nice golden colour and also tender. Strain & and keep separately.

  •  Fry potato cubes until tender and golden in colour. Keep aside.
  • Temper remaining (add little more if required) oil with panchforon, bay leaf and dry red chilli. Fry until nicely fragrant. Now add pasted spices (add cumin & coriander powder, if using), 1/4 tea spoon turmeric powder. Cook till raw smell is totally gone and oil is separated from spices. Add tomato at this point. Add salt & sugar. Cook till tomato is soft & smashed.
  • Add fried potato and mix with spices. Cook covered over lowest heat for 3-4 minutes. Add green peas (add peas with potato if using fresh ones). Give it few nice stirs.
  • Add water. Bring it to boil. Shimmer covered for 5-6 minutes or till potato and peas are cooked. Add fried cauliflower. Cook covered for another 2-3 minutes over low flame. Adjust gravy and turn off the gas.
  • Add ghee. Maa doesn't add garam masala or coriander leaf in this dish (I don't use.). But you can use any of them if you like.
  • Enjoy with plain rice/ misti polao/ phulko luchi.

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