Try to find a bold garam masala – one with the smoky goodness of cumin and coriander seeds – or make your own. The spice mix is the perfect partner for cauliflower and holds its own before being pelted with hits of glorious saffron and creamy coconut.
½ large head of cauliflower, cut into 3cm-thick steaks
1 tbsp garam masala
1 tbsp rice bran oil
6-8 kale leaves
½ tsp saffron threads
¼ cup canola oil
1 tbsp cumin seeds
400g tin pureed tomatoes
1 tbsp brown mustard seeds, ground
½ tsp fenugreek seeds, ground
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp salt
2 cups vegetable stock
400g tin coconut milk
arils of ½ pomegranate
fresh mint leaves
1 green chilli, finely sliced
Preheat oven to 180C and line a roasting tray with baking paper.
Gently rub the cauliflower steaks with the oil and garam masala and arrange on lined baking tray. Roast for 30 minutes or until the cauliflower is golden and cooked through. For the last two minutes of cooking time, add the kale leaves and roast until crisp. Set aside.
Soak the saffron in a quarter cup of warm water and set aside while you prepare the curry.
While the cauliflower is roasting, heat the canola oil in a medium pot on high heat for 1 minute. Stir in the cumin seeds and sizzle for about 30 seconds.
Reduce heat to medium, then add tomatoes, mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, cayenne, turmeric and salt. Stir well and cook for 5 minutes, or until oil glistens on the tomatoes.
Add the stock, increase the heat to high, bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 10 minutes, stirring regularly. Add coconut milk, reserving about 2 tablespoons for serving, and saffron (including its water). Stir well and cook for a further 15 minutes.
To serve, place the cauliflower steaks into bowls and top with piping-hot curry sauce. Pour over the remaining 2 tablespoons of coconut milk and scatter with crisp kale leaves, pomegranate, mint and sliced chilli.