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Wow your guests with Aloo Gobi Cups



Aloo Gobi Cups

This flavorful Punjabi sabzi makes a bright and beautiful appetizer. You can blanch small quantities of cauliflower, potato, and carrot, of course, but this is an opportunity to save time and use frozen vegetables, which often has a lower climate impact because they are picked in the field and reduce loss and waste across the supply chain. Fragrant with roasted spices, the vegetables are served in crispy baked cup made from besan (chana dal flour) and garnished with zesty chunky Mango Salsa.


Prep 30 minutes

Bake 7 minutes                    

Makes about sixteen ¾-high cups and eight 1 ½-inch high cups


Spice blend

¾ teaspoon cumin seed, lightly roasted and ground

¾ teaspoon kalonji (nigella) seeds, lightly roasted and ground

1 teaspoon black mustard seed, lightly roasted and ground

1 teaspoon coriander seed, lightly roasted and ground

6 to 8 curry leaves, lightly roasted and ground


Dough

1 ½ teaspoons golden flaxseed, freshly ground

1 cup besan

1 tablespoon nutritional yeast

1 teaspoon arrowroot

½ teaspoon granulated garlic

½ teaspoon granulated onion

½ teaspoon of the spice blend

A pinch of white pepper, freshly ground

1 teaspoon shiro (mild, white) miso paste

1 small yellow potato, microwaved and riced while hot

Up to 3 tablespoons water


Filling

¼ teaspoon hing nuggets (asafoetida), freshly ground

1 cloves garlic, chopped finely

1 small green Indian chili, chopped finely

½ inch knob fresh ginger, peeled, chopped finely

2 cups frozen diced cauliflower florets, defrosted, and cut into small pieces

2 cups frozen sliced or diced potatoes, defrosted, and cut into small pieces

1 ½ cup frozen sliced or diced carrots, defrosted, and cut into small pieces

1 small red onion, peeled, cut in a small dice

Up to 1 cup no-sodium vegetable broth

½ teaspoon ground turmeric

A pinch of white pepper, freshly ground

A pinch of cayenne

2 teaspoons shiro (mild, white) miso paste, diluted in 2 teaspoons water, or to taste


Garnish

1 cup Mango Chutney 

½ cup cilantro leaves, crudely chopped


Hints:

  1. Because frozen vegetables are blanched prior to freezing, they required minimal cooking to retain their textures. Therefore, we add them towards the end, just to absorb the flavors of the spices and aromatics as they reheat.

  2. I used mini brioche tins that measure 3 ¼-inch at the top, 1 ½-inch at the bottom, and 1 ¼-inch tall. The size and number of shells you make will depend on the size of your tins.


Make the Spice Blend

  1. Heat a small skillet for 2 minutes over medium-low heat. Add the cumin seeds, coriander seeds, nigella seeds, black mustard seeds, and curry leaves.

  2. Stirring constantly, and with your nose right over the skillet, roast them for only 30 seconds to a minute, just until their aromas reach you. Do not allow them to smoke or burn or they will turn bitter. Cool slightly. Grind in a spice or coffee grinder.


Make the Dough and Bake the Shells

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.

  2. Use a coffee grinder to grind the flaxseed into a powder.

  3. Combine the ground flaxseed, besan, nutritional yeast, arrowroot, granulated garlic, granulated onion, ½ teaspoon of the roasted and ground spice blend into the bowl of a food processor. Using a pepper mill, grind the white peppercorns into the bowl. Add the shiro miso.

  4. Microwave the potato for 2 minutes. Test. If a knife easily penetrates the potato, it is done. While it is still hot and using a potato ricer it, squeeze the potato into the bowl. The potato’s steam will hydrate and soften the dough.

  5. Immediately run the processor for 1 to 2 minutes. The dough should form and gather into a ball. If it is too moist to gather, add a spoonful of besan and reprocess. If it is too dry, add one tablespoon of water, reprocess, adding more if needed. The dough should be pliant with the consistency of dense Play-Doh with very little tackiness.

  6. Dust a large cutting board with besan and roll out the dough to 1/16[F1] -inch thickness. Flip and dust the dough repeatedly as you roll it to prevent sticking.

  7. Use individual mini brioche or mini-tart pans to bake the shells.

  8. Use a cutter, sturdy glass or lid measuring 2 ¾-inches for small cups or 3 ¾- inch wide for large cups, cut out the dough in circles. Lightly bend each circle in quarters and recenter it over a tin. Reopen the dough and lightly press it to conform to the tin’s fluted contours. It does not matter if the cups only partially fill the tins; this is a dry dough and once baked, it releases easily from the tin.

  9. Place the filled tins on a cookie sheet and bake the shells for 5 minutes and begin checking for doneness. They may need only one or two minutes more. The cups are ready when they are golden and lightly toasted. Do not overbake them.

  10. Transfer the tins to a cooling rack. After a few minutes, you should be able to pluck them out of the tins.


Make the Filling and Filling the Cups

  1. Use a coffee grinder to grind the hing nuggets into a powder. Measure and set aside. Store any excess in a spice bottle in the fridge. It will remain fragrant and potent for several weeks.

  2. Use a mezzaluna or chef knife to finely chop together the garlic, ginger, and Indian green chili.

  3. Use a mezzaluna or chef knife to cut the defrosted cauliflower, potatoes, and carrots into small pieces.

  4. Heat a deep skillet or sauté pan on medium-low for 2 minutes. Add the diced onion and sauté it dry, stirring, until it releases its liquid and begins to darken the pan. Deglaze the pan with a few tablespoons of vegetable broth, scraping up the caramelized onions sugars from the pan.

  5. Stir in the minced garlic, ginger and chilis. Cook for 1 minute.

  6. Add the turmeric, ground hing, and 1 teaspoon of the spice blend, stirring well. If you enjoy more heat, add a pinch of cayenne powder now.

  7. Stir in the cauliflower, potatoes, and carrots, coating them with the spices and aromatics.

  8. Add more broth as required to create a moist stew. Cover and cook on a low for 5 minutes to allow all the flavors to meld.

  9. When the vegetables are uniformly hot, turn off the heat and stir in shiro (mild, white) miso to taste.

  10. Taste and correct the seasonings as you like.

  11. Spoon the hot filling into the baked besan cups mounding them slightly on top.

  12. Top with a spoonful of Mango Salsa and chopped cilantro and serve immediately.




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