This Iraqi cauliflower-meatball casserole can just as easily be made in a pot like a regular marag or stew as it can in a casserole in the oven.As hearty as it is simple, this is a filling, comforting, and a nutritious dish.
To add even more substance, split peas are added. Split peas are great in that they don’t necessarily need pre-soaking like other beans might, and they cook within about 15 minutes of boiling.
From Delights from the Garden of Eden.
500g minced meat
1/2 cup split peas
1 small head cauliflower, floretted
1 onion, chopped
2 Tbsp oil
1 tsp curry
3 Tbsp tomato paste
3 cups water
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp chilli
1/2 tsp 7-Spice
Form the minced meat into balls and broil them in a deep oven-proof dish under the grill until brown throughout. Shake the pan to roll the balls for even browning. Set aside.
Preheat oven to 400F.
Boil the split peas in excess water for 15 minutes, until softened. Drain and set aside.
Saute the cauliflower florettes and the chopped onion in the oil until starting to soften and brown .
Add the curry and saute for a minute longer then remove from heat. Set aside.
In a pot, combine the tomato paste, lemon juice, water, 7 spice, salt and pepper, and chilli and bring to a boil.
In the same oven-proof dish where the browned meatballs are, arrange the cauliflower saute and the drained split peas around the meatballs.
Pour the tomato sauce over the lot.
Bake the dish covered in foil for 30 minutes and covered for 15 minutes.
Serve with rice.
If opting for stovetop over oven, proceed with the recipe until boiling the tomato sauce, but instead of combining everything in the meatball dish, add all the components to the tomato sauce pot.
Simmer for 20-30 minutes and serve with rice.