Braised cauliflower with peas

close-up view of braised cauliflower in a bowl with some fennel seeds strewn around.

Cauliflower, when paired with vegetables that have complementing flavors, and cooked right, turns out to be irresistible. This recipe includes just a dash of fennel seeds and cumin seeds as flavoring agents, giving the dish a uniquely delicate flavor. This is one of those recipes which prove that the simplest dishes are the tastiest ones.

Cauliflower is a good source of antioxidants, phytonutrients, fiber and several vitamins and minerals like vitamins C, K, B6, folate and many others. An article published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) places cauliflower 24th on a list of “powerhouse fruits and vegetables.” (source- Paired with green peas which are excellent sources of protein, antioxidants, fiber and a lot of nutrients, this recipe turns out to be a nutritious one.

Want to know some fun facts about cauliflower? And a recipe for “riced” cauliflower? Click:

Ingredients (for 4 servings)

  • cauliflower – 1 medium sized head
  • frozen green peas – 1 cup, thawed for 30 minutes
  • onion – 1 big, finely chopped
  • green chili pepper – 1, finely chopped
  • fennel seeds – 1 teaspoon
  • cumin seeds – 1 teaspoon
  • mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon
  • sunflower oil – 1 teaspoon
  • salt to taste


  1. Chop the cauliflower head into equal sized florets, about 1-inch wide pieces. Heat the oil in a wok or saute pan, add mustard seeds. Once they splutter, add onion and green chili. Saute until onions turn transparent.
  2. Add the cauliflower florets and green peas, saute for 5 minutes. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of water, close with a lid and cook on medium heat for about 10 minutes.
  3. Open the lid and sprinkle the fennel and cumin seeds and salt. Close and cook again for 5 more minutes.
  4. Check if the cauliflower is done. The florets should have changed colour but not mushy. If not done, cook for 5 more minutes. Sprinkle some water (1 teaspoon at a time) if it sticks to the bottom. In total, the florets should not take more than 20 minutes to cook, unless you’ve chopped them too big.
  5. Remove from heat, let it stand for 5 minutes, then serve and enjoy as a side dish with flavored rice.


  • The success of this recipe lies in cooking the cauliflower right. The cauliflower should be taken off the heat as soon as it changes colour, so that it is still firm but not crunchy. A little care makes all the difference between an amazing dish and a mediocre one.


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