Sunday, 16 November 2014

Gobi Manchurian from Sarani's Kitchen

Last week has been nothing short of enervating and I had to stay away from the kitchen. Finally, I have returned to the kitchen, and boy am I cooking up a storm in there! My 'come back' post is a special one though. So, Kolkata Food Bloggers  is hosting a rather cool event here! Know Your Blogger. So every week, one blogger member of the KFB is nominated as the Star of the week, an the remaining members cook one dish from the weekly star's blog and of course blog about it. And this week, the star of the week is Sarani Tarafdar of Back to Basics @

Sarani's blog to me is like that snug corner in your house with that comfy sofa where you like to settle down with your favourite novel and a mug of piping hot chocolate. Yes, it is warm and comforting. Visiting her blog is like entering a home redolent with the divine aroma of fresh baked cookies.Literally. The blog has an impressive assortment of baked goodies I often drool over with a generous smattering of other delicacies, Indian and International.

Sarani lives in Mason, Ohio with her husband and five year old son, a very cute boy with a lovely smile. No wonder her blog has a number of recipes kids would love. Take for instance her One Minute Chocolate Chip Cookies in a Mug or the Easy Peasy Cake Balls. For her son's Monster Inc/Monster University themed birthday party a couple of months ago Sarani whipped up a delightful 'Surprise 5 Inside' cake. Sarani's little one definitely keeps mamma on her toes and in the kitchen.

I am not much of a baker. I lack the patience and perseverance necessary to bake on a regular basis. So, though I drooled over and craved Sarani baked sweet goodies, when it came to recreating her recipe chose a savoury dish. Choosing wasn't easy either because the options are many. Besides, it so happened twice that that someone else beat me to the dish I chose to make to celebrate Sarani's blog. Finally I decided upon her rather appetising Gobi Manchurian, quicky informed the other members of the KFB and sealed the deal.

 Gobi or Cauliflower Manchurian - Batter-fried cauliflower florets tossed with onions. garlic, cilantro leaves and a few sauces -  is the archetypal Indo-Chinese dish. I have always wanted to make it at home but never got around. Now that cauliflower is in season, and because my folks love the vegetable, I thought it would be a great dish to make and Sarani's recipe sounded promising. It was also a welcome break from the usual varieties of cauliflower curries and stir fries we make at home. Also many of my friends complain that my blog has very few vegetarian dishes. So here goes, staying off the meats and fish for ones. The best part -this dish is not only easy but hardly takes time to make if you have prepped in advance.

I have stuck to Sarani's recipe for the Gobi Manchurian with only a few minor changes here and there depending of personal preferences.. I added my touch only with these thin rice flour pancakes I served the spicy sauce laced batter fried cauliflower florets in. You can make a wrap out of it and chomp it down if you like.



Caulifower - 1 small
Finely chopped onions - 1 large
Finely chopped garlic - 1 tbsp
Grated ginger - 1.5 tsp
Finely chopped green chilies - 1 tbsp
Finely chopped cilantro leaves - 1/2 cup (and a little extra for garnish)
Soy sauce - 3 tbsp
Hot and Sweet tomato sauce   - 1.5 tbsp
A pinch of sugar
Salt to taste
Cornflour/starch - 1 tsp
Water - a couple of tablespoons

For the batter
All purpose flour - 1/2 cup
Cornflour/starch - 1/4 cup
Coarsely ground black pepper - 3/4 tsp
Water enough to make a thick batter

For the pancakes (makes 3-4)
Egg - 1
Milk - 1/4 cup
Rice flour - 3 tbsp
Corn flour - 1 tsp
Soy sauce - 1/2 tsp
Salt, fresh cracked pepper and sugar to taste
Finely chopped cilantro leaves - 1 tsp
Oil to fry


Cut the cauliflower into medium sized florets. Make sure you clean them well. Sprinkle a pinch of salt and keep aside.

In a bowl mix together the dry ingredients for the batter. Slowly whisk in water to make a lump free thick batter.

Heat oil in a pan. Dip the cauliflower florets in the batter, one by one, and deep fry.

Once done, reserve the batter fried cauliflower, while you make the sauce.

In another pan heat a couple of tablespoons of oil.

Add the onion, garlic, ginger and green chilies. Saute for a few minutes on high heat.

Add the soy sauce,a large pinch of sugar and the tomato sauce and give a good toss. Once it begins to caramelize, add the corn flour dissolved in a few table spoons of water.

It's take only minutes to reduce, toss in the cilantro leaves and the batter frried cauliflowers. Toss it on high heat for a while. Add the cracked pepper, adjust seasoning (be careful here, the sauces usually make for almost enough salt) and remove from heat.

For the pancakes. 

Mix all ingredients, except oil, together to make a lump free batter.

Heat a frying pan greased well with oil, add a ladle of battle and twirl the pan to spread it out into a thin disc. Wait for a minute or so that one side gets done. Slowly release the sides with the ends of your spatula before flipping it over. Cook on the other side for no more than 30 seconds.

Serve the Gobi Manchurian on a thin pancake or rolled into one.

And here's wishing Sarani and her blog all the best and many more delicious years ahead.


  1. I'm buying cauliflower tomorrow just to make this dish! It looks fantastic!

    1. So glad you like it Memoria. Do let me know it turns out should you make it. :)

  2. Thank you for all the lovely words! (I thought I had left a comment before, sorry!).
    Loved the idea of serving it with rice flour pancakes... reminded me of Soru Chakli!

  3. Made this yesterday. Yummy! Thanks for sharing.