Monday, 9 January 2012

Cauliflower Tomato Rice

Its been so hot in Hyderabad the last few days with the day temperatures hovering around 33 degrees centigrade. Hyderabadi winter was supposed to cool, cold even and if not until February, at least until the middle of January. Sure, its ideal weather for my home made ice cream to be gobbled up, but please believe me i was not praying for hot weather just to enjoy my ice cream. And now because i am wondering if the weather Gods are changing the temperatures to suit my cooking, I am going for a spicy hot Cauliflower rice.
I love rice. A good fried once remarked that it was my favourite not just among food items, but my most favourite thing in the world. So much did i love it, that he was considering gifting me a big bag of rice as a birthday gift. No, i ended up with a cake that year, but it wasn't out of consideration if you must know. 
After marriage though, the husband wasn't fond of my ideas for one pot meals with rice, but seeing how many times i was putting forth the idea he finally told me to make the cauliflower rice. I was stumped, i had never heard of it and had no idea how to make it. I was directed to my mother in law, who was even more surprised because she hadn't cooked it in years, or maybe even decades. It seems she used to make it when my husband was really young and was a really picky eater. Armed with her recipe i have made it for the first time more than a year ago and now we have it often during the cauliflower season. My picky eater of a husband eats cauliflower in only two forms, one is this rice and the other is cauliflower pickle.

Serves: 2-3 as main course
Prep time: 10-15 minutes
Cooking time: 20-30 minutes
1 small cauliflower (2 cups florets)
1 medium sized onion, sliced
4-6 green chilies, sliced; adjust according to taste
3 medium sized tomatoes, chopped
1 small bunch fresh mint leaves
1 cup Basmati rice (or any long grain rice)
2 tablespoons oil
1 inch cinnamon stick
3 cloves
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon ginger garlic paste
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/2 teaspoon garam masala
salt to taste
1 small bunch coriander, finely chopped, for garnish
Wash the cauliflower and cut into small florets. Wash the rice in cool water twice and let it soak in 1 cup of water for 15 minutes. Meanwhile in a large heavy bottomed pan heat the oil on medium heat. Add the cinnamon, cloves and cumin. When the cumin starts to splutter, add the onion and green chilies and fry till the onion starts to brown. Add the ginger garlic paste, stir, and the cauliflower florets and saute for 3-4 minutes on medium flame. Add the tomatoes and allow to cook for a minute with the lid closed. Add the turmeric powder and garam masala and give it a stir. Now add the mint leaves, the rice along with the water  in which it was soaked and an additional two cups of water. Add the salt. The water should be slightly salty to taste as the rice and cauliflower will absorb some salt as they are cooked. Bring the water to a boil on high heat and then lower the flame back to medium-low. Cook with the lid closed until the rice turns soft. Add extra water and salt based on how soft you want your rice and cauliflower, i usually use 4 cups of water to get an almost mushy consistency.
Garnish with fresh chopped coriander and serve by itself or with an accompaniment of yogurt/ raita and this kofta curry.
Linking this to Healing Foods: Cauliflower event being hosted by Vardhini of Zesty Palette. The healing foods events are Siri's idea
Also linking this to Lets Cook: Rice event being hosted at Tickling Palettes.


  1. Yummy looking pulao. I am a rice person and love one pot meals. Thx for linking to the event.

    Event: New "U" - Healthy Eats
    Event: Healing Foods - Cauliflower

  2. Totally yummy. You are coming up with posts of such amazing food. I am tempted to make this one too. My next post is about your strawberry icecream btw.

  3. Thats a super tempting and flavourful one pot meal,lovely dish.

  4. Thanks Vardhini. Your event came at a great time too.
    @ Anita - I am so glad you like these new posts. I too am happy to be making the transition from just writing to newer foods.
    @ Priya, thank you

  5. Once I thought of making cauliflower rice with the left over cauliflower after making gobi manchurian. but I didn't want to take risk and simply avoided it. Your version came out so good, I am sure I'll make next time when I have cauliflower with me.

  6. Thanks for your motivating comments La. It always boosts my energy.

  7. I usually hate cauliflower... cant stand the smell :( but this flavorful rice is quite tempting! Will try this for the hubster and then take a tentative bite myself maybe :D

  8. ooh that an interesting twist to a tomato rice....


  9. Thanks Uma, let me know how it goes.
    @Swati, not a big fan of cauliflower myself, only used to eat it combined in scrambled egg (cauliflower and egg porutu) as a kid. The egg overpowers the smell of cauliflower there. This rice isn't too bad because of the spices. Give it a try :-)
    @Sandhya, Thank you for your time here and for commenting.

  10. recipes like these are lifesavers. looks wonderful.

  11. You have an award at my space,please collect it dear..

    Erivum Puliyum

  12. You have an award at my space ,please collect it dear:-))Erivum Puliyum

  13. I am drooling over this picture - Just the kind of rice I love to delve into with gusto :) So.... gimmmeeeee :)

  14. Wonderful rice love to try it soon..

  15. A delicious rice dish! I love the flavors.




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