Gobhi Mussallam

It’s not thanksgiving yet, but I have a center piece for my table. I am not a thanksgiving doer, but I do like thanking people for the good round me. So, here it is for all of you.

I had never tasted Gobhi Mussallam until I made it for one of my friend couple who came over for dinner. They are special, so I had to make something special. I started searching on the Internet on what can be possibly be good to make them feel special. I discussed the menu with my all time foodie and bestie, and here is the result of that discussion. I decided that Gobhi Mussallam will be the crown of the table. Did some research, made some changes per my taste and the result was heavenly.

It is a North Indian dish that is made with a humble cauliflower available in every household. It is blanched as a whole, grilled and then topped with a yummy creamy gravy. The word Mussallam means ‘whole’ and so the name of the dish.

We had it with tomato naan. But, one can have it with chapati, parantha, rice and even use the leftovers in sandwiches.

Gobhi Mussallam
Gobhi Mussallam


Looks like a baked turkey, eh? It is the turkey for vegetarians 🙂 Here we go with the recipe. It uses fairly good number of ingredients and  long recipe, but it isn’t as difficult as it looks. You will fall in love with it once you make it.

Ingredients for Gobhi Mussallam

  • Cauliflower – 400 -500 gms

For Marination

  • Turkish yogurt or hung curd – 1 cup or 200 gm approx
  • Ginger garlic paste – 2 tbsp
  • Red chilli powder – 1 tbsp
  • Garam Masala – 1 tsp
  • Turmeric – a pinch
  • Roasted Gram flour – 2 tbsp
  • Kasoori Methi (dried fenugreek leaves) – 1/2 tsp
  • Oil – 1 tbsp

For the gravy

  • Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
  • Oil – 2 tbsp
  • Onion – 1 medium (chopped)
  • Ginger garlic paste – 2 tbsp
  • Tomato – 1 big (pureed)
  • Cashew paste – 2 -3 tbsp
  • Mussallam Masala – 1 tbsp (home made – recipe at the end of the blog)
  • Corriander powder – 1 tbsp
  • Turmeric – 1/2 tsp
  • Red chilli powder – 1/2  tsp
  • Salt to taste
  • Cream – 100 g
  • Water – 1 cup

Method for Gobhi Mussallam

Blanch the cauliflower

  1. Cut the stem of the cauliflower; we just need the head.
  2. Boil enough water in a pan that can submerge atleast half the caultiflower.
  3. Add a good pinch of turmeric to it.
  4. Add the cauliflower and let it boil for 3 minutes, flip it gently and let it boil on the other side foe 3 more minutes. You can flip using two spoons.

Note: We just want the cauliflower to be a little blanched and not fully cooked. The idea here is to prepare the cauliflower to absorb the marination well.

Marinade the Cauliflower

  1. In a bowl, take the yogurt, and add 2 tbsp of ginger garlic paste. Whisk a little.
  2. Heat a tbsp of oil in a pan, add the roasted gram flour, now add 1 tsp red chilli powder, 1/2 tsp turmeric powder, fenugreek leaves, and salt to taste. Saute for half a minute and turn off the gas stove. Make sure you don’t burn the spices; all we need here is to enhance the aroma of spices.
  3. Add this spice mix to the bowl of yogurt and mix well. Taste the marinade for the desired level of hotness.
  4. Smear the marinade onto the cauliflower. Push in some marinade through the gaps between the florets, using your fingers. We need the cauliflower to absorb marinade flavor well.
  5. Put the marinated cauliflower in fridge for 30 minutes approx.

Grill the Cauliflower

  1. Preheat the oven at 180 C.
  2. Line a baking tray with aluminum foil.
  3. Take out the marinated cauliflower from the fridge and place it on the prepared baking tray with the head side up.
  4. Grill for 25-30 minutes or until you a desired color on the cauliflower head.

Make the Gravy

  1. Heat 2 tbsp oil in a non-stick pan.
  2. Add cumin seeds. When the seeds start to crackle, add the chopped onions.
  3. Once the onions start to turn pink, add 1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste and saute for 2 minutes.
  4. Add the cashew paste and saute for 2-3 minutes while stirring continuously. The cashew paste has tendency to burn quickly and that might change the taste of your dish, so be very careful here.
  5. Once they paste turns golden, add the tomato puree and cook until the oil separates. Again, keep stirring during this step.
  6. Now, add the spices (1/2 tsp turmeric, 1/2 tsp red chili powder, coriander powder and mussallam powder) and saute for a few minutes.
  7. Add the cream and let it simmer for 2-3 minutes.
  8. Add water and continue to simmer. If the gravy looks thicker than desired, add some more water and let it simmer until you get the desired consistency. Keep in mind that the gravy is supposed to be thicker than normal as we are going to pour it over the grilled cauliflower and it should stay there.

The Final Assembly

  1. Take out the grilled cauliflower and place it onto the serving plate.
  2. Pour the gravy on the top.
  3. Garnish with fresh coriander and serve with naan, chapati, parantha or rice.
  4. Lick your fingers while eating 😉
Gobhi Mussallam
Gobhi Mussallam


Mussallam Masala

For the mussallam masala, dry roast and grind the following spices and add 1/2 tsp of dried rose petals. I didn’t have it so added rose water.

  • cinnamon – 1/2 inch stick
  • fennel – 1 tsp
  • pepper corns – 4-5
  • cloves – 2
  • green cardamon – 2
  • black cardamon – 1
  • cumin seeds – 1/4 tsp
  • corainder seeds – 1/4 tsp
  • dried ginger – 1/4 stick

Enjoy the scrumptious dish!

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