The combination of cauliflower with potato is unbeatable! There are various different ways to pair these two favorites. You can stir fry to make a lovely side dish. North Indian style Aloo Gobi is one of my fav goto. Similarly a milder version is this Bengali Style Cauliflower Potato Curry called Phulkopir Aloo Dalna. Phulkopi is the Bengali term for cauliflower and dalna is often referred to light pure vegetarian curries. Ready in 30 minutes, you will love this curry on busy work days.
Phulkopir Aloo Dalna
In India, cauliflower is a winter vegetable. As a result Phulkopir Aloo Dalna is prepared very often throughout the winter months. You can prepare Phulkopir Aloo Dalna in several different ways. This particular fulkopi recipe is the most common one as it’s super quick and light. Every family has their own way of preparing this dish. You might want to add tomatoes and add more spices to makes it spicier. The dish is quite similar to aloo gobi except for the spices that goes in making the dish.
Key notes you want to keep in mind
Phulkopir Aloo Dalna doesn’t include a lot of spices and here are few key things to follow:
- For a lovely authentic flavor, cook this fulkobi recipe in mustard oil
- Phulkobi/ Cauliflower with paanch phoron is a lovely combination. For the perfect earthy aromatic flavor definitely use this five spice mix.
- One common keynote is to keep the cauliflower chunky so you get that mouthful feeling. The florets shouldn’t get mushy.
- There is no onion or garlic, which makes it a pure vegetarian dish.
On multiple occasions, I have realized that people tend to assume Bengalis eat fish for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Also, people think that we Bengalis don’t eat vegetables at all and there was a time when I used to get really mad at those statements. Now, I have started giving them gyan on how balanced is the Bengali everyday menu. Yes, we love non- vegetarian and probably eat more non- vegetarian than usual but every day, we also consume a good amount of vegetables. Every meal includes a pure vegetarian curry or stir fry, prepared with seasonal vegetables.
Growing up, Mom would prepare this often for our lunch box. She would make it less gravy therefore the gravy won’t spill. While she would serve this curry with rice, I personally do enjoy it more with roti. The chunky cauliflower gives a lovely bite while the potatoes adds the starch. There by making it a lovely well balanced curry.
Here are few other Bengali dishes you will enjoy!
- 1 cauliflower head, cut into chunky florets (12.50 oz/ 352 g)
- 3 small potatoes, peeled and diced in cubes (7.50 oz/ 213 g)
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1¼ teaspoons sugar
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon paanch phoron, Indian five spice
- 2 small bay leaves
- 4 cloves
- 3 cardamoms
- ½ teaspoon cumin powder
- ½ teaspoon coriander powder
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- 1½ cups water
- ¼ cup frozen peas
- Place a heavy bottom pan on medium heat and pour 1 tablespoon of oil. Once the oil heats up, drop the cauliflower florets along with ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon turmeric. Stir around to mix, cover the pan and cook for 7 minutes to for the cauliflower florets to soften a little and get that brown crust. Toss around the florets in between to avoid it from sticking to the bottom of the pan. Once the florets are fried, take it off the pan into a separate bowl.
- To the same pan, pour rest of the oil. Once the oil heats up, drop the whole spices (paanch phoron, bay leaves, cloves and cardamoms). After that stir around for a couple of seconds and then, drop the potatoes. Sprinkle ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon turmeric. Toss around, cover the pan and cook the potatoes for 5 minutes.
- Prepare a spice paste in the mean time. Take a small bowl and add cumin powder, coriander powder and chili powder. Add a little water and mix it to form a paste.
- After 5 minutes, stir the fried potatoes once again and pour the spice paste. Toss around to mix everything and let it cook for 3 minutes.
- Pour the water and rest of the salt. Cover and cook for 5 minutes or until the cauliflower florets and the potatoes are cooked through but still hold the shape. You don’t want to make it mushy.
- Check for salt at this stage and add any, if needed.
- Finally, drop the frozen peas and cook for 1 minute.
- Serve the dalna warm paired with either rice or roti.