Curried Cauliflower and Chickpeas

I had an old head of cauliflower languishing in the produce drawer, so I liberated it from the fridge for an adaptation of this recipe from  Although the original recipe includes tofu, my husband and I agreed the dish would be tastier without it after the first time I made it (it added nothing and was a pain in the prep and cooking), so I omitted it.  The flavor of this meal is great–I particularly like the fennel seed–and it was quite filling.

Curried Cauliflower and Chickpeas
Recipe type: One-Pot Dinner
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • ½ teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 + ½ tbsp minced fresh ginger
  • 2 medium garlic cloves, minced to a paste
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • ⅛ tsp cayenne pepper
  • ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 (15-oz) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed (about 1½ cups)
  • 1 medium head of cauliflower, trimmed and cut into 1-inch florets
  • 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice (from about 1 medium lime)
  • basmati rice for serving (optional)
  1. Heat the 2 tablespoons of oil in a large saute pan with a tightfitting lid over medium heat.
  2. Add the fennel seeds and toast, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  3. Add the onion, ginger, and garlic and cook, stirring, until caramel brown, about 10 minutes.
  4. Add the garam masala, turmeric, cayenne, and a large pinch of salt and cook, dribbling in a little water, 1 to 2 tablespoons, as you stir.
  5. Add the chickpeas, cauliflower, and the remaining ½ cup water. Cover and cook until the cauliflower is tender, about 15 to 20 minutes.
  6. Before serving, mix in lime juice. Serve over rice.

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