March 24, 2013

Gobi Musallam

Gobi Musallam

Gobi Musallam

Who said vegetarian main dishes can’t be as breathtakingly beautiful as a regal, Mughalai-style roast? Created in the same vain as Dum Aloo, Paneer Butter Masala and Shammi Kebabs, this traditional dish from Uttar Pradesh makes a big deal of the humble cauliflower by serving it whole. Yes, whole.

Richly spiced and cooked with yoghurt and creamy cashew paste, the whole cauliflower is treated with more respect than any vegetable could ever wish for. It is first rubbed with golden turmeric, salt and butter, and then roasted in a hot oven to concentrate its flavours and give it an incredible smoky, caramelised flavour. Finally, it’s simmered in the yoghurt and cashew sauce until it sucks up all the spices and becomes juicy and robust.

Unfortunately, Gobi Musallam is an elusive dish I’ve never spotted on a restaurant menu in the UK. They obviously don’t know what they’re missing. Forget boring old Aloo Gobi, this isn’t your average cauliflower curry – this is your secret dinner party weapon you use to impress your mates and astonish any irritating Indian food snobs you might know. Come on, we all know one.

Gobi Musallam makes a stunning centrepiece for the dinner table and is perfect for sharing. Give everyone a large spoon and tuck in, breaking away the tender morsels of cauliflower, peas and spicy sauce. Scoop up with flaky paratha and a splodge of chilli and cumin-spiked yoghurt.

Cauliflower never tasted this good.

Gobi Musallam (2)

Gobi Musallam

1 whole cauliflower, leaves removed but root left on, rubbed with salt, turmeric and 25g softened butter
100g peas (I use frozen)
50g butter
150g fresh tomatoes, pureed
1 tbsp concentrated tomato paste
240ml milk

For the spice paste:
1 onions peeled and roughly chopped
2 green chillies
12 cashew nuts
1 clove garlic, peeled
1 inch piece ginger, peeled
1 inch cinnamon stick
2 cloves
½ tsp nutmeg
6 green cardamom pods, husks removed
4 tbsp natural yoghurt
2 tsp salt
Fresh coriander leaves, desiccated coconut and kalonji seeds to garnish


1. Place the turmeric-rubbed cauliflower on an ovenproof tray and roast at 175C for 25 minutes or until tender. Remove from the oven and set aside.

2. Grind all the ingredients for the spice paste until smooth.

3. In a large, non-stick pan, melt the butter then add the spice paste. Cook, stirring all the time until lightly golden brown. Add the blended tomatoes, tomato puree and milk. Allow to simmer on a low heat for 8 minutes. Add the peas.

4. Add the whole cauliflower and baste with the sauce. Cove with a lid and cook for 5 minutes. Remove the lid and baste again, cooking for 10 minutes with the lid off. Serve in a large bowl or platter, garnished with coriander leaves, coconut and kalonji seeds.

Gobi Musallam (3)

Love Sanjana


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15 responses to “Gobi Musallam”

  1. Arti says:

    That looks soooo yummy! :o)

  2. jyotsna modha says:


    A simple humble vegetable normallt overlooked by most people has been turned into a something so, so spectacular and mouth-watering. Great for sharing at a dinner party.

    Amazing talent – keep dreaming up WONDERFUL food.
    All the for the future.

  3. MM says:

    hmm, My mum makes it different way which I love. I will try to share her recipe soon

  4. That is a gorgeous looking dish. Love it 🙂

  5. Siri says:

    Its so much fun to serve one big whole head of cauliflower than the usual curries that we make with cut florets. Thanks for the idea! 🙂

  6. Shema George says:

    This definitely will make a stunning centerpiece..Love the recipe – I am sure it would taste heavenly

  7. Hitu says:

    I have never liked the smells associated with boiled cauliflower, but would definitely love to taste this

  8. Viswa says:

    Wow, I can look at it all day.. Definitely most unique dish I have seen!

  9. Gobi Musallam looks amazing! Loved the clicks.


  10. mustardseed says:

    That dish can be the star of a party! Looks delicious. I love your serving spoons with the carving in it!

  11. asfi says:

    Can u share the recipe of the paratha

  12. […] week I made a whole cauliflower curry.  It looks pretty impressive, and it’s quite tasty too.  I’m not normally a fan of […]

  13. Looks really good and tempting.. love the color!! Your recipe photography is stunning..!

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