4.5/5 rating (31 votes)

Gobi Masallum

Whole Cauliflower Roasted in a Spiced Sauce

  • Heat Mild
  • Serves 8
  • Prep 15 mins
  • Cook 40 mins

Baked whole head of cauliflower, drenched in a creamy Mughali gravy.

Hari says

An awesome north Indian dish from the Uttar Pradesh region which is thought to have been created by some of the top Mughali chefs in years gone by. It's a fabulous dish that celebrates the humble cauliflower and creates a dish solely about the beautiful ingredient. Now, this year is all about the cauliflower so let's shout about it and make it the perfect centrepiece to your dinner party. 

The whole head of the cauliflower is marinated with simple spices and roasted in the oven until it's soft and tender. The creamy Mughali gravy is similar the makhani sauce used in my Murgh Makhani (Butter Chicken) recipe, it's fragranced with a few posh spices and a decadent cashew nut paste. The flavour of the cauliflower works beautifully with this sauce and the whole dish just comes to life. And if you want to you can make it even richer with some coconut milk. Enjoy!

  • Ingredients
  • Method
  • 3 tbsp raw cashews, soaked for two hours
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 head cauliflower, outer leaves trimmed off
  • 2 tbsp ghee or rapeseed oil
  • 1 red onion, roughly chopped
  • 3cm ginger, sliced into strips
  • 2 tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1 green chilli, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp dried fenugreek leaves (methi)
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp Kashmiri red chilli powder
  • ½ cup water (more if needed)
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • Handful of coriander, chopped


  1. Soak the cashews and heat the oven to 180°C .
  2. Fill a tall pot with water, then add salt and turmeric. Bring to a boil and gently submerge the cauliflower using a slotted spoon.
  3. Reduce the heat to medium and leave it to simmer for 5 minutes, then flip the cauliflower over and simmer for another 5 minutes. Keep the cauliflower submerged.
  4. Strain your cauliflower and set aside on some kitchen roll while you make the sauce.
  5. In a wide based pan heat the oil or ghee and add the onions. Sauté the onions until they soften, this should take about 5 minutes.
  6. Stir in the garlic and cook until the onions start to brown. Add the chopped tomatoes, ginger, chilli, crushed coriander seeds, salt, Kashmiri red chilli powder and dried fenugreek leaves. Cook this until it becomes wonderfully aromatic and the tomatoes break down (about 7 minutes).
  7. When the tomatoes have melted into the sauce add the garam masala and remove the sauce from the heat.
  8. Add the cashew nuts and some water and using a hand held blender blitz the masala sauce until it's silky and smooth. Place it back on a gentle heat and cook through for a few minutes. The sauce should be the consistency of thick soup (add more water if the sauce gets too thick).
  9. Find an oven proof dish that the cauliflower will sit in comfortably and add the ghee or oil. Heat this dish and add the cumin seeds. When they sizzle and become fragrant remove the dish from the heat and place the blanched cauliflower into it.
  10. Pour the lovely sauce over the cauliflower so it's completely covered. Some of the sauce will end up in the base which is fine. You can also keep some sauce back to serve with too. 
  11. Place the cauliflower in the oven and leave to bake for 40-45 minutes until the cauliflower is dry to touch and has just started to brown. The sauce will also have thickened.
  12. Garnish with fresh coriander, slice and serve with some naan.

Nutritional information

Typical values* per Serving
Fat (g)4
of which saturates (g)2
Carbohydrates (g)9
of which sugars (g)3
Fibre (g)4
Protein (g)3
Salt (mg)487
*Based upon calculated values, supplied by myfitnesspal.com. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated.

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Comments (10)

  • Sandra


    18 September 2020 at 16:27 |
    Is it vegan when I use vegetable oil instead of ghee?


    • Hari Ghotra

      Hari Ghotra

      27 October 2020 at 19:29 |
      Yes it sure is!


  • Steve Wilcox

    Steve Wilcox

    19 July 2019 at 09:20 |
    HI Hari,
    I made this last night and it was fantastic! As I didn't realise that I had to soak the cashews for two hours until i was well into making it I just ground them up and added them in it seemed to work well!
    I will be making this again!


    • Hari Ghotra

      Hari Ghotra

      07 September 2019 at 13:14 |
      Great to know Steve - did you put a picture in the app? I love this recipe too!


  • nic


    17 November 2017 at 20:16 |
    i made this tonight , probably used a bit more cumin than recipe as i love it , but it was very tasty and very moreish !!! thank you Hari!! i did in slow cooker proabbly 4hrs on slow not 4 1/2 as my cauli was slightly too cooked but still luverly had to stop myself eating the lot !!!!


    • Hari Ghotra

      Hari Ghotra

      18 November 2017 at 07:29 |
      Hi Nic so good to hear that you enjoyed it - anywhere between 3-5 hours should do it depending on the size of the cauliflower. Thanks for your feedback! Hari


  • Vicky


    25 August 2017 at 19:08 |
    Another awesome receipe, didn't have the cashews in so used a blob of peanut butter it s a great way to use up 3/4 of leftover cauliflower!!


    • Hari Ghotra

      Hari Ghotra

      29 August 2017 at 14:01 |
      Hi Vicky - haha nothing like a bit of improvisation!! Love that thanks for sharing the peanut butter tip. Cheers Hari


  • Hari Ghotra

    Hari Ghotra

    05 July 2015 at 08:27 |
    Hi Gareth, Oh that's surprising - for me the sauce is really, really flavoursome - It's gentle and creamy but also really packs a bit of a punch which is what you need with the cauliflower otherwise as you say the dish would be too bland. I'm going to have a look through and just incase something is missing but is should be a really tasty dish. Thanks for trying it and giving me your thoughts. Hari


  • gareth


    04 July 2015 at 16:34 |
    I gave this recipe a go this evening and it wasn't bad but not the best for me!

    The cauliflower was cooked perfectly, soft but it still had a bite to it.

    The sauce however I found a little bland if I am honest. The taste of the spices is very subtle and what i taste most is the ginger.

    It was still enjoyable but it didn't pack as much flavour as I had hoped.

    Is this how it should be?



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