Phulkopi Chringri Dalna: Cauliflower-Shrimp Curry

It took me a long time to fall in love with cooking, and when I did I fell hard. One of the few regrets that I have is not having documented my Didu’s (Ma’s Mom) recipes. I remember the sumptuous meals that my Didu would cook when we visited her and Dadu (my Grandpa). There would always be ‘begun bhaja’ (fried eggplant/brinjal) and mishti (sweets) since these were my favorites. My Ma’s cooking is more like it used to be done in Baba’s house, which I love. To me comfort food is what I have grown up eating. And since I do not make everything that Ma does, I have asked her to write down some of my favorite recipes while I make some following her instructions over the phone. The thrill that I feel when something that I cook tastes exactly like hers – cannot be expressed in words. This particular recipe was a winter-time special in our household when cauliflower would be available in abundance unlike now, when you get almost everything all year round! 
Phulkopi Chringri Dalna: Cauliflower-Shrimp Curry
  • Shrimp – 8, medium size
  • Potato – 3/4 Cup, cubed
  • Cauliflower – 3/4 Cup, cut into medium sized florets
  • Onion – 3 tbsp, finely chopped
  • Tomato – 3 tbsp, grated
  • Ginger – 1 tsp, grated
  • Green Chili – 1 or 2 (or more if you prefer more heat)
  • Cilantro – 2 tbsp, finely chopped
  • Cumin Seeds- 3/4 tsp
  • Cumin Powder – 1/2 tsp, 
  • Coriander Powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Garam Masala Powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Turmeric – 1/2 tsp + 1/2 tsp
  • Paprika – 1/2 tsp
  • Sugar – 1/4 tsp
  • Salt to taste
  • Oil – 1/2 tbsp + 1tbsp (I used mustard oil, you can use canola if you wish)
  • Water – 1 to 1 1/2 Cups
Marinate the shrimps with 1/2 tsp turmeric and salt. If you wish you can fry the shrimps (like my Ma does) and add these back once the gravy is cooked. I like adding the raw shrimp directly to the gravy. In a non-stick pan heat 1/2 tbsp oil and temper it with the cumin seeds and green chilis. Once the cumin seeds start spluttering toss in the cauliflower florets and fry well for few minutes. Then throw in the potatoes and fry for a couple of minutes. Cover and let it sweat till the potatoes are almost tender. Keep aside. To the same pan heat the remaining 1/2 tbsp of oil and to it add the onions and fry till golden brown. Now add the tomato, ginger and all the spices to it. Cook till the oil starts leaving the sides of the pan and then add the cauliflower florets and potatoes back and stir till the masala coats the vegetables. Add enough water to cover the vegetables and cook till the potatoes are fork tender. Add the marinated shrimps and cook for few minutes till they turn pink. Take the pan off the heat and sprinkle the cilantro on it. Serve warm with hot rice, chapati or paratha.

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