Sri Lankan Coconut & Cauliflower
I've been using coconut milk in my cooking quite a lot recently - I like the slightly sweet, nutty flavour it can give to dishes and it is absolutely perfect for my homemade chunky cauliflower soup. Using spices such as cumin, fennel, mustard seeds and turmeric, combined with cauliflower, peas and potatoes – this is a soup that is deliciously spicy and creamy with a hint of nuttiness all at the same time.
Cauliflower, a member of the cruciferous vegetables family, is an excellent source of natural antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds – making it an absolutely fantastic vegetable to include in your meals. Extremely versatile and easy to cook, you can use cauliflower as a substitute for rice, pizzas and can also be considered a somewhat ‘healthier’ version of mac and cheese!
1 tsp panch puran (Five spice blend - Cumin, Brown Mustard, Fenugreek, Nigella and Fennel)
5 small curry leaves
1 white onion, finely chopped
2 green chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
5 garlic cloves, crushed
5cm piece of ginger, grated
1 large tomato, finely chopped
½ tsp turmeric
2 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1 large cauliflower, broken up into florets and rougly chopped
5 new potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 small cup of frozen peas
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Handful of fresh coriander, roughly chopped
Grab a large saucepan and add a large glug of rapeseed oil. Add the panch puran and chilli and saute for 2-3 minutes.
Then add the ginger and garlic and saute for a further 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, salt, turmeric, ground coriander and cumin and keep sautéing for four to five minutes. The tomatoes should have softened.
Place the cauliflower, potatoes and peas into the saucepan. Stir well so that the vegetables are coated in the onion-tomato mixture. Then add the coconut milk and water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover with a lid and simmer for 10-15 mins until the cauliflower has softened and cooked through.
Grab a stick blender and blend the soup mixture to a thick, chunky puree - I don’t like this soup completely smooth and like the texture of peas, and small cauliflower pieces!
Season, to taste, with salt and lots of freshly ground black pepper and serve immediately. Finish with a sprinkle of coriander.