The Green Foodie: Don’t leaf out the cauliflower

The best kept secrets for good food lie in things which we usually discard away. This recipe is testimony to that!


It has been a constant endeavour in the past few years to increase the green quotient in the diet. I have grown up getting inspired by my mother who had a penchant for unconventional food like the delicious dish she would put together from the outer-skin of green banana.

An idea struck me while picking up cauliflowers; it wasn’t about the flower, but the leaves. The challenge was to find substantial amount of leaves, since most of the shops chop off the leaves, before putting up the veggie on the shelf, but I just got lucky one day. It was early hours, so the lady was just chopping off those leaves. I instantly cooked up a story saying that I have a rabbit who is very fond of cauliflower leaves, and if I can take a few of those home. She was going to throw them off anyway. I offered her some money. Well, not only did she refuse money; she gave me almost a sackful, when I wanted just a few!

Now, what I prepared not only tasted fine, but actually turned out to be quite a delight for taste-buds.

All you need apart from 250 gms of Cauliflower leaves is:

A medium sized onion,

Garlic pod – 12,

Ginger – a small cube,

A medium sized tomato,

Cumin seeds – 1 tablespoon,

2 chillies (more if you have an appetite for fiery spice),

One bay leaf,

and salt to taste.

Chop the cauliflower leaves, boil it in water with a dash of salt. Drain the water and keep it aside.

Make a paste of half an onion, 5 garlic pods, ginger, and chillies. Chop the rest of the onion, & cut the remaining garlic and tomatoes into smaller pieces.

In a wok, heat oil & add the bay leaf, cumin seeds and wait for it to splutter. Once it does, add the chopped onions and chopped garlic. Wait for the onion to turn brown, before adding the paste. Add salt, & tomatoes, till the entire bit is sufficiently sautéed. Add the boiled leaves, and ensure that the whole thing is nicely mixed. Cover the wok with a lid to steam. Check in a while, and add a bit of water so that the dish doesn’t turn very dry. Steam it for a few more minutes, and serve it hot. It’s a good side for rice.


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