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Dinner with Rukmini

Browse all of the recipes in Rukmini Iyer’s cookbooks by ingredient.

Chechki: One-Tin Spiced Cauliflower and Potato Curry with Peas

Rukmini and her mum have adapted this recipe for the classic Bengali dish of cauliflower and potato cooked in spices (chechki), to create a time-saving one-tin version.

From the book

Rukmini Iyer


Chechki is a classic Bengali dish, where cauliflower and potatoes are cooked with panch phoron or Bengali five-spice. Traditionally, you’d make this in a frying pan, cooking the potatoes and cauliflower with the spices from raw. While this is delicious, it’s very time consuming, so over the years Mum and I have adapted this to an easy one-tin version, which saves so much time and lends a lovely flavour and colour to the potatoes and cauliflower. It’s wonderful served with puris or luchis or shop-bought parathas, which you can buy and cook from frozen.

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1 medium cauliflower, cut into small florets
400g potatoes, peeled and cut into 1cm cubes
175g frozen peas, defrosted
fresh coriander leaves, to serve
3 tbsp neutral or olive oil
1 tsp sea salt flakes, or to taste
2½ tsp panch phoron, or use equal parts/what you have of nigella, fennel, mustard, fenugreek and black cumin seeds to make up 2½ teaspoons
1 tsp sugar


Preheat the oven to 180°C fan/200°C/gas 6.

Tip the cauliflower and potatoes into the roasting tin, mix well with the oil, salt and panch phoron, then transfer to the oven and cook for 30 minutes until the potatoes and cauliflower are cooked through and lightly brown.

Add the defrosted peas and sugar, stir, then return to the oven for a further 10 minutes. Taste for salt, adjust as needed, then scatter with fresh coriander before serving hot.

NOTE: It’s not traditional in Bengal to use the cauliflower leaves in this dish, but you can if you wish. (Just don’t tell my mum.)

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From the book: India Express: Simple and Delicious Recipes for Every Day

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