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So The Amish County was visited and enjoyed. The idyllic green farmlands, the quaint villages with equally quaint names like Bird-In-Hand, Kitchen Kettle Village, Intercourse (ahem !!), the buggy ride through the Amish Farms, the Dutch Farmers Market with their fresh produce and the jams & preserves was thoroughly enjoyable , more so with the lovely weather bestowed on us since Friday.
The little daughter was an angel, no throwing-up, no car seat blues, very co-operative during the entire trip, The parents were happy, The husband was happy, he got his own TV to watch while me watched chick-flicks with dear Momma (yeah I carried Movies as a backup plan for the Rains), The People who did business with the "Amish" as their USP were very very happy indeed, The Amish...I do not know.
Everything was fine except something that kept gnawing at the back of my head, that something called commercialization of the entire thing. I had gone there thinking there would be villages & farms and maybe a gift shop or two thrown in as is the norm but I was astounded by the bustling business that had built up around the whole thing and the malls that had sprung up to cater to the visitors.
Coming from a culture and a background where materialism is not the norm and simplicity is or at least was the way of life, I wasn't very amazed by the Amish way of living, though I am impressed now that being there bang in the middle of all those malls with brands screaming from BOSE to BASS they still adhere to their culture and lifestyle not perturbed by the "Amish" brand visitors are falling for.
All said and done, we had a nice break, I got lovely veggies and pickles & jams. I got a huge cauliflower so there I go and cook. I got this recipe of cauliflower called “Ada FulKopi” or “Adraki Gobi” or “Ginger Cauliflower” from my bengali recipe book by an author known as Bela De. My Ma too does this with a little variation, but the one I did yesterday was almost by the book. It is a very nice dish with ginger dominating the flavor and the taste is a little emphasizing the tartness of the tomato and the crunchiness of the cauliflower.
The BIG cauliflower :)
What You Need
Cauliflower ~ 1 cut into florets. I used half of the cauliflower shown above and cut the florets a little on the large size
Baby Carrots ~ about 10 of the small ones cut into halves
Green Peas ~ ½ a cup
Ginger ~ 1” chopped fine in juliennes
Onion ~ 1 and ½ medium sized
Garlic ~ 2 big cloves
Ginger ~ 1 & 1/2”
Grind all of the above to a paste
Tomato ~ 2 medium sized nice plump red tomatoes pureed. I did with skins and everything
For Phoron or Tempering
Elaichi or Cardamom ~ 2
Laung or Cloves ~ 2
TejPata or BayLeaves ~ 2
DarChini or Cardamom Sticks ~ about a 2" stick
GolMirch or Peppercorns ~ 10
Coarsely pound the above
Yogurt ~ 2/3 cup
Red Chilli Powder (according to taste, I did not use any)
How I Do It
Cut the cauliflower into medium sized florets (not very small else they will turn mushy while cooking)
Chop the carrots
Heat Oil in Kadai/Frying Pan. Use Olive Oil if you prefer
Lightly fry the cauliflower (no deep frying, more like sauté them) florets till Golden. Tip: I always add Turmeric Powder to the hot oil and then add the cauliflower to prevent the oil from spluttering. This also makes the cauliflower golden with light frying. Also cover while frying.
Remove the florets and keep them in a bowl.
Grind the onion, ginger and garlic to a paste. Keep about 1 tbsp of the paste for frying, use the rest in the next step
Mix the yogurt with this paste and a little salt. Also add chilli powder if you want to the yogurt according to your spice level.
Marinade the cauliflower florets with the above marinade for about half an hour.
Heat Oil in Kadai/Frying Pan. You can use the same oil.
Add TejPata, Elaichi, Laung, DarChini, Gol Mirch as phoron or temper with this
Add the finely chopped ginger and fry a little
After frying the ginger for a little add about 1 tbsp of the onion/ginger/garlic paste and a little sugar
When the onion turns a light brown, add the carrots and peas
Saute for a little while
Add the cauliflower along with the marinade
Then cover and cook till the masala is cooked and coats the veggies uniformly. This in Bengali coking term is called “kashano”
Add salt according to taste and add the tomato puree
Cover and cook till the veggies are done. They should be crunchy.
Add a little sugar if the taste is little sour to your liking
This has very little gravy so adjust that accordingly
Garnish with coriander leaves
You can have this "Ada FulKopi" with Roti, Paratha and even Rice (I love my Rice :)). This can be served as a dish when you have guests over and also for your weekday lunch or dinner.
Trivia: Mark Twain said " Cauliflower is nothing but a cabbage with a College Education"