This is a really great dish to make when people come round, as it’s a crowd-pleaser and easy to cook. Normally, the sauce comes together at the same time as the roasted cauliflower, leaving you more time to tell your best jokes or play the spoons to your guests. A lot of the flavor in this dish comes from both caramelizing the onions and roasting the cauliflower, so don’t compromise on either of those.
Serves 4 as a main course or 6 as a side
2 large cauliflowers (about 32/3 pounds in total)
2 large yellow onions, thinly sliced
6 cloves of garlic
2½-inch piece of ginger, peeled
¾ teaspoon ground cardamom (or finely ground seeds from 8 pods)
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 teaspoons garam masala
½ teaspoon ground red chile
1 cup ground almonds
2 tablespoons honey
2 cups plain Greek yogurt
¾-1¼ cups milk
a handful of raisins
a handful of flaked almonds
Heat the oven to 350°F and line two large baking pans with foil.
Break the cauliflower into bite-sized florets and put into a large bowl. Pour 4 tablespoons of oil over the florets (or enough to coat them properly), then sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of salt. Mix with your hands until they’re completely coated, and place in a single layer in the baking pans. Roast for 30 to 40 minutes, until tender and nicely browned in places. Check every 10 minutes—if the florets start to burn, cover them loosely with foil.
In the meantime, put 3 tablespoons of oil into a large frying pan over medium heat and, when hot, add the onions. Cook for 12 to 15 minutes, until soft and browning, then crush in the garlic and grate in the ginger. Fry for a couple of minutes, then add the ground cardamom, black pepper, garam masala, ground red chile, ground almonds, honey, and 1¼ teaspoons of salt (or to taste). Stir-fry for 3 minutes, then add the yogurt.
Turn the heat down to low and cook for around 10 minutes, until the sauce starts to turn a rich gold. When the cauliflower is tender, tip it into the sauce and stir to coat. Thin the sauce to the consistency of pouring yogurt with milk, and heat through. Check for seasoning, as you may need to add a little more salt.
Finally, put a small frying pan over medium heat and, when hot, add the raisins and flaked almonds. Stir-fry until the raisins start to blacken and puff up and the almonds turn golden brown, then take off the heat.
To serve, scatter the raisins and toasted almonds over the top of the cauliflower, and serve with rice or chapatis (see here).