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Gobi (Cauliflower) Tikka Masala

Gobi Tikka Masala
What's cooking in your kitchen?  At our place, its a vegetarian menu.  Grilled cauliflower curry with soft, fluffy phulkas.  Nutty protein rich almonds add a nice creaminess to the curry, enhancing its flavor.

Ingredients:
Cauliflower/Phulgobi - about 1 pound
Lemon Juice - 3 tbsp
Turmeric/Haldi - 1/4 tsp
Red Chili Powder - 1/2 tsp
Onion - 1 medium
Tomatoes - 2 medium
Dry Red Chilies - 5
Garlic - 5 big cloves
Ginger - an inch piece
Coriander/Dhania Powder - 1 tsp
Cumin/Jeera Powder - 1 tsp
Tandoori Masala - 1 tsp
Whole Almonds/Badam - 15
Milk - 1/2 cup
Coriander/Cilantro Leaves - few sprigs
Oil - 4 tbsp
Salt

How to make Gobi Tikka Masala:
  • Soak almonds in water for about an hour or so.  Discard the almond skin.  Blend the soaked almonds with milk to a fine paste.
  • In a big bowl, add lemon juice, turmeric, chili powder and salt.  Mix all the ingredients well.  Add cauliflower florets to the bowl.  Coat the florets well with the marinade.  Cover with a plastic wrap and let it rest for an hour or so.
  • Finely chop onions and cilantro leaves.  Puree tomatoes, ginger, garlic and red chilies to a fine paste.  Avoid adding water. 
  • You can use store bought canned Tomato Paste instead of tomatoes.  I have used mild Byadagi red chilies which impart a nice color.  You can use Kashmiri Lal Mirch powder or Spanish Paprika for color as well.
Grilled Cauliflower
  • Heat a pan or a griddle for frying the marinated florets.  Add 2 tbsp oil and coat the pan well.  You can use butter as well. 
  • Pan must be hot enough, so that when you add cauliflower, it makes a sizzling sound.  Place the marinated florets on the hot pan.  Cook each side at high heat for 2 - 3 minutes or until brown grill marks are seen on the florets.  Let the half cooked cauliflower cool for about 10 minutes.  Alternatively, you can broil the cauliflower in an oven as well.
  • Heat a kadhai/wok and add 2 tbsp oil.  Add onions and sauté until onions soften.  Add tomato puree and cook until it forms a thick paste.  Add ground coriander, ground cumin and tandoori masala.  Stir in almond paste and about 1/2 cup water.  Stir well and add cauliflower.  Add little salt and cook it covered until cauliflower is completely cooked.  
Garnish Gobhi Tikka Masala with chopped cilantro.  Top it with some cream and serve with Roti, Naan, Parathe, Jeera Rice.

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