Curried Cauliflower Stew

I loved this dish!  I found it in “The Heart of the Plate” by Mollie Katzen.

I made my stew with brown basmati rice.  Make sure you give yourself lots of time to cook the rice as it takes 45 minutes.

The author notes that low-fat yogurt works fine in this dish, but for a richer taste, consider using a whole-milk yogurt.  A thicker, Greek-style yogurt, including non-fat, will also work well.

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1-2 tablespoons peanut, coconut, canola, or grapeseed oil
2 cups minced red or yellow onion (1 large)
1 tablespooon minced fresh garlic
2 teaspoons mustard seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
3/4 teaspoon salt, or more to taste
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon each ground cardamom and coriander (optional)
2 teaspoons minced or crushed garlic
2 medium heads cauliflower (about 4 pounds total), trimmed and cut into 1-inch florets
4 medium carrots (about 1 pound total), cut into half circles about 1/8 inch thick
Up to 1/4 cup water (optional)
1 cup plain yogurt, at room temperature
1 15-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
Cayenne
1 1/2 cups cashews, lightly toasted
Cooked brown basmati rice

1. Place a soup pot, large saucepan, or Dutch oven over medium heat for about a minute. Add the oil and swirl to coat the pan. Add the onion, ginger, mustard seeds, cumin seeds, and 1/2 teaspoon of the salt. Cook, stirring, for about 5 minutes, or until the onion becomes translucent and the spices begin to snap. Add the ground spices and garlic and cook over low heat, stirring often, for another 5 minutes.
2. Add the cauliflower and carrots, along with another 1/4 teaspoon salt, stirring until the vegetables become coated with the good stuff in the pan. (If the mixture appears dry, splash in the water, a tablespoon at a time.) Cover and cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are just tender, 15 to 20 minutes, depending on the size of the pieces and your taste in vegetable texture.
3. When the vegetables are done to your liking, gently stir in the yogurt and chickpeas, mixing until thoroughly combined. Taste to adjust the salt and add cayenne to taste.
4. Stir in the cashews just before serving. Serve hot or warm over rice.
MAKES 6 to 8 SERVINGS

Optional Enhancements :
Finely chopped fresh spinach, added in step 3
Sliced ripe cherry tomatoes, stirred in or on top
A scattering of torn cilantro leaves
Golden raisins on top
Crushed red pepper or chili oil

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