Prawns and Cauliflower Pullao

Not sure why, but prawns and cauliflower seem to go exceptionally well together in this combination.

Perhaps it’s something to do with the salt/sweetness of the prawns particularly suiting the flavour of the cauliflower.

Texturally also, there’s a very good counterpoint between the two main constituents, especially if the cauliflower is at that wonderful stage where it is cooked so as nice and tender, but not falling apart as it can do if overly stewed.

The slightly tricky thing about this particular dish is accurately judging the amount of water to use so as to cook the rice to perfection.

The problem here is that an amount of water is emitted by both the prawns and the cauliflower during cooking, and the yoghurt also increases the amount of liquid once it is assimilated into the dish.

In order to get round this, I use some judgement for the amount of water to add, but also then dry the pullao off in the oven (as I would a biryani), which I think has the added effect of helping the flavour to dissipate even more effectively throughout the dish.


  • 1 medium onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 inch pce of ginger
  • 2 red chillies
  • small handful coriander leaves
  • 1/2 tsp tumeric
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tblsp natural yoghurt
  • 300g prawns (cooked or raw)
  • 1/2 medium head of cauliflower broken up into small (1/2 inch size) florets
  • 1 cup of rice (enough for 2 people) (soaked for 1/2 hour then drained)
  • 5-6 cherry tomatoes
  • 1/2 lemon
  • salt


Chop the onions, garlic, ginger, chillies and coriander and fry until soft

Add the tumeric and cumin and fry for a couple of mins.

Add the rice and yoghurt and stir.

Add the cauliflower and prawns and mix well.

Add about 1 and 3/4 ‘s as much water as there was rice, and some salt (although not as much as usual since the prawns are salty).

Bring to a simmer and cover. Cook for about 7-10 mins. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 160 deg

After 10 mins, the rice should be more or less cooked, but there’s probably still some excess liquid in the pot.

Throw in the tomatoes, and dot with butter.

Place in the oven for about 10 mins (but be wary of drying up to much. You just have to use judgement here).

When rice is fully cooked and pullao has dried up sufficiently, remove from oven, squeeze over some fresh lemon juice, mix and serve. (below is served with a spinach and mushroom dhal).


About Gourmet Gorman
I'm a musician who enjoys cooking

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