Asian Food is incredible, for a person who loves food, trying out different asian dishes is more than just a hobby, is a true discovery. Gobi Manchurian caught my attention few years ago when i discovered how cuisine in this area is well focused around vegetarian dishes (often due to religious believes).
There are several dishes around Asia which are a great thing since you can always look forward to trying out a different one every chance you get. Chinese food for example is popular for how rich and colorful it is, is diverse in color, in aroma and it has excellent flavor. It’s also presented as a work of art. Indian food is on the other hand is loved for its spicy nature and just how tasty it is to so many people.
Indians like to use a lot of different ingredients and spices in their food, on average, about seven ingredients per dish. Imagine this though, a combination of both Indian and Chinese aspects in one dish. That’s what we’re talking about in this article, Gobi Manchurian it’s an example of a dish that combines these two cultures and well if you haven’t heard of it yet, no worries because this article will unpack what this dish is all about.
What is Gobi Manchurian?
Gobi Manchurian is an Indo-Chinese dish. First of all, Gobi is a name used for cauliflower so as you can already imagine, this dish includes cauliflower florets. These are fried in some flour and cornstarch batter. You toss them around a little and then allow them to become crispy. After this, they are again dipped in Manchurian sauce.
This Manchurian sauce is from Manchuria Region although this specific dish was first made by Chinese restaurants found in India. The dish looks a lot like the traditional Manchu or Chinese cuisine. Stories from the region state that the Manchurian dish was first created by a man called Nelson Wang upon the request of a customer. Since Wang was a cook in the Cricket Club of India, the customer requested a new dish from what was already on the menu.
Despite the fact that Manchurian is popular now, the inventor described his dish as being made primarily of the simplest ingredients including ginger, chopped garlic, and green chills then some soy sauce. He then added some cornstarch and chicken to complete the dish. The Gobi Manchurian is actually the vegetarian variation of Manchurian Dishes thanks to the fact that it’s made from cauliflower.
This sauce is made from a combination of soy sauce and some vinegar. As such, it has a sweet but at the same time tangy taste. If you prefer to have it very spicy, you can always add some hot sauce to it.
Gobi Manchurian Recipe
Well, luckily you don’t have to make your way to India or anywhere else out of your country to get a taste of this dish. The recipe is quite simple and with a few ingredients and a number of simple steps you can have it on your table right when you want it.
- 250g cauliflower florets (cleaned)
- ½ cup all-purpose flour (organic or unbleached)
- ¼ cup cornstarch (either white or yellow corn flour)
- ½ – 1 teaspoon red chili powder / paste (optional)
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper (ground/crushed)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup water
- Take the red chili powder and mix it with some water to come up with a paste. Set it aside. Note that this is not compulsory as it’s all about giving the dish its red color.
- Take 1 ½ tablespoon of oil and heat in a pan then allow it to turn hot. After this, add some ginger, garlic and some green chilies then sauté this mixture for about a minute or two.
- Into the mixture, add some spring onions and capsicum then sauté them on some high heat for about two minutes.
- Add some soy sauce, tomato ketchup, red chili sauce, red chili paste, vinegar and some sugar. Mix these ingredients and then add some water. Keep mixing as you cook. Add in some pepper and keep stirring the mixture.
- Cook this over medium heat until the sauce becomes thick then turn the stove off.
- Taste the mixture to ensure it’s just a little sour, sweet and just a bit hot. You can always add salt and sauce if you feel the need to then allow the sauce to cool for a minute or two.
- Add in the fried cauliflower and then stir gently so that the gobi is well coated with the Manchurian sauce.
- Proceed to garnish using your spring onion greens.
- Serve your gobi Manchurian as an appetizer.
This recipe takes about 10 minutes to prepare and cooking will just take about 25 minutes of your time. This makes it a great dish for days when you might be just a little tired or busy. The dis serves three people so if you are alone, you can get different servings from it.
This recipe is for a dry gobi Manchurian, although you can also make it semi-dry. To achieve this, simply double the amount of vinegar, sugar, chili and tomato sauce used. You can then take just a half a cup of water with a teaspoon of cornflour, and then add this into the bubbling sauce. After you’ve done so, stir it and keep tasting it. The goal is to achieve that sweet, tangy and spicy taste all at once.
For your own health, you should remember to toss out the oil you use in frying the cauliflower. This is because you use this oil to fry it and it takes quite a while. The oil is never fresh afterward so do not reuse it for making any other dishes.
Since the chili powder is only used to give the recipe color, you can always skip it but should you choose to go with it, adjust to your taste. There isn’t a standard measure for how much you should insert into the mixture. Just ensure it’s not too hot for you otherwise it will ruin your entire meal.
Baked Gobi Manchurian
You can also bake gobi Manchurian. For this, you first have to rinse the florets and then drain them. Once you’re done, you should dip the florets in some spices and then next, dip them in some flour. Use between two to four tablespoons of flour. From there, you can proceed to dust off any excess flour and place the florets on a tray. Ensure you used a greased tray for this. Also, make sure the cauliflower is moist so that the dry ingredients will coat them well.
If you follow these tips, this baked gobi will make for such a great appetizer, starter, or great side dish.
Gobi Manchurian Gravy
To make the Manchurian gravy will also not take you so much time. Here’s what you need:
- ½ cup maida, plain or refined floor
- 2 tbsp cornflour
- 1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
- 1 tsp Kashmiri red chili powder
- 1 tsp soy sauce
- 2 cups boiled cauliflower
- 2 tsp oil
- 2 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
- ½ cup spring onions (finely chopped)
- 1 tbsp chili sauce
- 1 tbsp tomato sauce
- ½ tsp pepper (crushed)
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp vinegar
- Grab a large bowl and mix maida and your cornflour.
- Add in the ginger-garlic paste, chili powder, some salt and lastly the soy sauce then add some water to make a smooth batter out of the mixture.
- Add in the gobi florets and then deep fry them in some hot oil until they become golden brown in color.
- Use a kitchen towel to drain off the gobi. This will help remove the excess oil. Once you’ve finished doing this, keep it aside.
- Take a large Kadai and in it, heat some oil and sauté some garlic. For this, ensure you’re using a high flame.
- Saute your spring onions and the capsicum then add in your chili sauce, soy sauce, vinegar, salt and crushed pepper.
- Mix this well and then sauté for about a minute.
- Add in some cornflour water then give it a good stir so that they turn translucent, after which you can add in the fried gobi.
- Mix gently until the sauce is well coated and uniform.
- Transfer to a serving bowl and then garnish using some green spring onions. You can serve this gobi Manchurian gravy alongside some rice.
As you can see, making this dish does not have to be so complicated. Through a few easy steps, you can get a taste of this amazing Indo-Chinese dish right from your home. If you’re wondering which one between the dry gobi Manchurian and the gravy one is the better option, the dry one is. This is because it’s a lot tastier and healthier. Bear in mind that the gravy option includes adding more chili sauce and more soy sauce. This makes the option less natural.
If you’re into watching your health then you’ll be happy to know that you can make a gobi Manchurian dish gluten-free. How? Well, simply replace the all-purpose flour with some cornflour or arrowroot powder.
With these recipes and tips, you have what it takes to enjoy a great Gobi Manchurian. Try it out!
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