cauliflower, kale + chickpea curry pot

cauliflower, kale + chickpea curry pot // @thefirstmesspin it!cauliflower, kale + chickpea curry pot // @thefirstmesspin it!cauliflower, kale + chickpea curry pot // @thefirstmesspin it!kale // @thefirstmesspin it!
So I spent the last weekend at my first ever blogger conference-type thingy in Pennsylvania with some funny, passionate, smart, and encouraging people. Lots of hugs, smiles, introductions, inspirational messages, and totally delicious things to eat. I think it’s possible (and totally normal) to be an introverted extrovert, and being in that environment of brand new, but also strikingly familiar instances brought out that personal conundrum all the more for me. I like to be loud and make crude jokes with lots of swears. But I also like to step into my fortress of solitude and parse out some of the bigger messages when I’m in the thick of it. Or just wander off into nature a bit. I think we all have a little bit of that duality.

After the conference, my road trip partner and I took a drive to Philadelphia to meet and stay with a friend of ours. We had less than 24 hours, but that didn’t stop us from having three sit-down meals (most notably here), two drink outings, and one bangin’ almond milk latte before we left. It was the perfect, quietly familiar ending to a high-energy, ecstatically social weekend.  Some blog-related topics like sponsorship came up with the three of us, and before I even realized it, I was saying things like “Why not me?” + “I wish I could be doing stuff like that.” The comparison thing finds its way in sometimes, even when you’re hopelessly aloof on most days. And then my racing mind couldn’t sleep that night. I was a bit distracted on the long drive home, thinking about what I’ve been doing wrong.

The upshot of this inner back-and-forth is that I’m not doing anything wrong. The whole weekend was glaring proof of how mistaken I was, however briefly. The heart of the blogging adventure for me has always been connection and a slow refinement of my own skill set. I get to connect with so many interesting people every week here, and we talk about natural foods, new techniques, flavour combinations that excite us, intuitions and feelings we’ve all had, and some of the more trying bits in life.

When I got home and noticed that the hood of my ever-problematic car was smoking after a drive around the block, and that the only fresh food we had in the fridge was a sad-sack head of cauliflower, I stopped caring about the “Why not me?” question. I had dinner to make and real-life problems to solve. I know that all of you can relate to that on some level, which is a potent reminder of some of my business here. We get to connect over the abundantly good and the endlessly frustrating spaces of life. Sometimes it’s just a legitimate recipe and sometimes it’s a real-life revelation disguised as a list of ingredients and step-by-step instructions. Either way, that connection is at the heart.

And this one-pot number? This is what I made for dinner that night with the smoking car and the limp-y cauliflower. Deep-nourishing and relatively quick comfort. It’s a pantry-raid effort that I recreate in some form almost weekly. There’s lots of vegetables, spice, stew-y tomato richness, tender greens, and the heft of chickpeas to fill it out. I know I’ve featured a couple stews/soups similar to this in the past, but with the frequency that I make this on my mind, it just felt right to share. Stay cozy out there, all. xo

cauliflower, kale + chickpea curry pot // @thefirstmesspin it!adds the kale // @thefirstmesspin it!cauliflower, kale + chickpea curry pot // @thefirstmesspin it!cauliflower, kale + chickpea curry pot // @thefirstmesspin it!
CAULIFLOWER, KALE + CHICKPEA CURRY POT RECIPE
Print the recipe here!
serves: 4-6
notes: The amount of vegetable stock you use depends on how thick/thinned out you want this. I went for something in between :)

1 tbsp coconut oil
1 cooking onion, small dice
1 tbsp curry powder
1 bay leaf
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tsp minced fresh ginger (optional)
small jalapeno or cayenne pepper, seeded + minced
1 cup 1/2 inch diced waxy potatoes
3 cups small cauliflower florets
28 oz can crushed tomatoes
1-2 cups vegetable stock, depending
1 cup cooked chickpeas
1 bunch lacinato/Tuscan kale, stems removed and chopped
salt + pepper
chopped leafy herbs to finish (parsley, cilantro etc)

Heat the coconut oil in a heavy + large soup pot over medium heat. Add the onions and cook slowly, lowering heat if necessary. Cook until very soft, translucent and almost breaking down, about 6-7 minutes. Add the curry powder and bay leaf and cook, stirring often, for 3 more minutes. Add the garlic, ginger (if using), and jalapeno to the pot. Stir and cook until fragrant, constantly stirring to avoid burning the garlic.

Add the potatoes and cauliflower to the pot and stir. Season with lots of salt and pepper. Add the crushed tomatoes to the pot and stir once more. At this point, add 1 cup of vegetable stock (you may want to add more later). Stir the pot, place a lid on top, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat on the stove to a simmer and remove the lid. Cook until the potatoes are just-tender, about 40 minutes. Add the chickpeas and diced kale,, and simmer for 5 more minutes or until greens have wilted.

Check the curry pot for seasoning, adjust, and serve hot with bread, naan, cooked brown rice, quinoa, millet etc. Garnish with chopped leafy herbs.

 

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  • Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar02/10/2014 - 5:58 am

    This is definitely my kind of “happy meal”. Love this!ReplyCancel

  • lynsey02/10/2014 - 6:20 am

    I am glad I am not alone in the introvert/extrovert battle. Never apologize for too many soups and stews. They are perfectly comforting and the world needs more of that. This looks amazing xoReplyCancel

  • valentina - sweet kabocha02/10/2014 - 6:29 am

    I tried a tuscan kale massaged salad but my boyfriend hated it. Damn. Kale is full of healthy properties! Maybe with this curry I’ll succeed in my aim :DReplyCancel

  • Brian02/10/2014 - 8:30 am

    It really was a special weekend. And I’m so glad we got to meet!

    Thrilled that you had a nice time on your slow trip back home. I really need to get to Philly. It’s been too long.

    This dish looks amazing! And it’s funny because I was just working on a kale, chickpea dish last night! Different. But funny how we crave these things this time of year.ReplyCancel

  • Elizabeth02/10/2014 - 8:30 am

    We’ve been eating nothing but stew lately; I think it’s that whole desire to embrace the season and the easy way all the fall ingredients work together. And the weekend? I had such a good time hanging out and came back feeling inspired. My return to normal life was also a bit frustrating and, as luck would have it, my own heap of a car is heading to the shop today. Womp womp.

    You know I feel this way, but you’re *absolutely* doing everything right –– real life, blog life, and all.ReplyCancel

  • Adrienne02/10/2014 - 8:54 am

    Wow, that soup looks amazing. I also LOVE the moody photos. Is it all natural or are you using lighting?

    Laura: Hi Adrienne, it’s natural light. Just right by a window on an overcast day :)ReplyCancel

  • Abby @ The Frosted Vegan02/10/2014 - 8:56 am

    I’m totally with you in this introvert/extrovert thing. I like people, but I just need quiet and alone sometimes! Also, thanks for broaching the ‘why not me?’ subject, as a blogger, I feel like it’s a tough one : )ReplyCancel

  • Joy Kurland02/10/2014 - 8:57 am

    Would love to “pin” this but don’t see a button.

    Laura: Hi Joy, there should be a small one when you hover over the photo with your cursor. Near the top left corner of each photo I think. I’ll look into this.ReplyCancel

  • Christine02/10/2014 - 9:19 am

    I love one-pot meals like this – so comforting and hearty, and packed with veggies. I have the same sort of experience with the intro/extrovert tendencies but I honestly think that speaks to the complexity of each person … it’s so hard to put a polarized label on an individual. I find the whole discussion of it really interesting. Have you heard of the book, “Quiet”? I heard the author speak a couple months ago. Good stuff :)ReplyCancel

  • Ashley02/10/2014 - 9:29 am

    I can definitely relate on the intro/extro thing. I also always say I’m half type A and half type B, haha. Hopefully the comfort from this soup helped you replant your feet in the ground. I think those moments of question are important, though. It makes us reflect on what we’re doing, question ourselves and our work, and then make a change or realize no change is needed. xoReplyCancel

  • Valentina @Hortus02/10/2014 - 9:33 am

    Omg I have all the ingredients to make this! This is probably dinner happening tonight. Wonderful!

    I never commented, but I love all of your blog so much :)ReplyCancel

  • Amy @ Parsley In My Teeth02/10/2014 - 9:50 am

    Great post – I think we can all find some of ourselves in there. And this is exactly the kind of thing I like to make now – curry with anything and everything. Now I know what to do with that head of cauliflower sitting in the back of my fridge!ReplyCancel

  • Lane | Green Spirit Adventures02/10/2014 - 10:09 am

    I’ve only ever tried curry once before and didn’t care for it all that much (I think it may have just been a gross brand a curry powder), but this has me so convinced to give it another go.
    I love the photos too, and your words; so refreshing and grounding to read. :)ReplyCancel

  • Emily02/10/2014 - 2:39 pm

    Just wanted to echo that you are so not doing the blogging thing wrong. I love your writing, recipes, and photography, and while I don’t mind occasional sponsored posts from other bloggers, I think your blog has a special authenticity to it. I really trust your taste, and that is why I cook from your blog more than other blogs. Thanks for all of the effort you put into this space!ReplyCancel

  • […] Cauliflower, Kale & Chickpea Curry Pot. […]ReplyCancel

  • Jilli Joffe02/10/2014 - 5:24 pm

    Mmm this looks delicious! Can’t wait to try! :)

    xo. Jilli

    http://www.justjilli.comReplyCancel

  • Eileen02/10/2014 - 7:14 pm

    This sounds super delicious! A huge pot of greens and veg and beans is exactly what I want when it’s chilly out. :)ReplyCancel

  • Paige02/10/2014 - 7:16 pm

    If you didn’t want to use chickpeas, what other beans might you use in this?ReplyCancel

  • Paige02/10/2014 - 7:18 pm

    One other thing: please keep doing what you’re doing. I really love your site and getting excited every time I see a post from you. As another writer pointed out, I too trust your food sense.ReplyCancel

  • Kale is hands-down my favorite green, and chickpeas are my favorite bean. LOVE this recipe.ReplyCancel

  • kristie @ birchandwild.com02/10/2014 - 10:07 pm

    This is the kind of fall meal I crave. Warm from the spice and full of end of season produce. I will make this tomorrow, as my kale is still quite prolific in the garden.ReplyCancel

  • Renee H.03/10/2014 - 12:00 am

    I love posts like this. It shows that behind all our beautiful blogs that there is a real person with a real life. I have never been to a conference like that one you attended. I would love to learn more about it! I’m new to the blogging world and really want to learn as much as I can and make new like-minded friends :)

    I also like seeing what foodies can come up with when they don’t have an entire kitchen stocked with beautiful, fresh, local yummies. Sometimes the best things come out of situations where we have to really get creative. Love your photos!ReplyCancel

  • Jess03/10/2014 - 5:04 am

    In a situation like that I’m pretty sure I would of just called in for take out. That looks absolutely delicious, well done on turning around what could of been a horrible night.ReplyCancel

  • […] for cool fall days: Cauliflower, Kale, and Chickpea Curry Pot from The First […]ReplyCancel

  • Sini | My Blue&White Kitchen03/10/2014 - 10:15 am

    I love your words and I love this curry recipe. So much comfort in one bowl. Also, I’m glad to hear your conference weekend went well!

    Cheers,
    an intro/extroReplyCancel

  • Heather03/10/2014 - 11:55 am

    Sounds like a great weekend! I love the Philadelphia area. We live in Southern Chester County near the border with Delaware. This recipe looks amazing!!!ReplyCancel

  • […] my list of edifying reads for the second week in a row is the latest post from Laura which I won’t summarize because I think you should see it for yourself. […]ReplyCancel

  • Sara03/10/2014 - 4:33 pm

    I love finding new options for a meat-less stew. This looks so rustic and inviting.ReplyCancel

  • Evan McGinnis03/10/2014 - 5:12 pm

    My girlfriend introduced me to your blog and I’ve been loving it ever since. Made this last night and it was delicious!ReplyCancel

  • Sherrie03/10/2014 - 5:53 pm

    I love everything about this. You are one of the greats Miss Laura — I totally mean that. I have admired and been inspired by your photos, your recipes, your work for years. Super honored to have spent some time with you and to be able to call you a friend.

    You. are. the. best.
    xo sherrieReplyCancel

  • […] Cauliflower Kale Chickpea Curry Pot (The First Mess) […]ReplyCancel

  • Millie l Add A Little05/10/2014 - 3:11 am

    Looks amazing!! I love how easy it is too – make a big batch and freeze it for a cold winter evening!ReplyCancel

  • […] this is my soul food. also, i {heart} this blog so much…you’ve got to check it […]ReplyCancel

  • Kelley Green06/10/2014 - 7:10 pm

    This was a real winner at our house. Both kids gave it an enthusiastic thumbs up. Thanks so much!

    :)kReplyCancel

  • Denise08/10/2014 - 11:07 am

    Dear Laura,

    You won’t believe how much this post means to me. It just came at exactly the right time. That ‘why not me’ question has been bugging me a lot lately, and somehow reading this from someone I highly admire (=you) helps. And puts things in perspective as well, because you’re so right. Those things are not what’s it’s all about. Not in blogging, not in work and definitely not in life.

    Thank you for always inspiring me. And this curry pot? Definitely gonna make it soon.ReplyCancel

  • agustina09/10/2014 - 2:41 am

    this is SO going on my meal plan for next week! thank you :)ReplyCancel

  • Borough 22 Brownies09/10/2014 - 8:48 am

    Pictures speak a thousand words and my eyes are the window to my belly. This looks amazing. And its getting cold in London so will be trying this out soon!!!ReplyCancel

  • Ani {@afotogirl}09/10/2014 - 12:08 pm

    Pinned! This is right up my alley. Yummy.ReplyCancel

  • Valentina Duracinsky - BLOG09/10/2014 - 6:12 pm

    craving chickpeas forever! need this soon!

    xx love

    ValentinaReplyCancel

  • […] cauliflower, kale and chickpea curry. so […]ReplyCancel

  • ATasteOfMadness11/10/2014 - 9:32 pm

    This looks amazing! I love chickpeas. I need to make this!ReplyCancel

  • aimee @ small eats12/10/2014 - 7:47 pm

    The entire week after Big Harvest Potluck was filled with cooking from the pantry and whatever sad vegetables I had left too!

    And I totally feel you on getting stuck in the comparison game. We’ve just gotta keep cooking and doing our thing.ReplyCancel

  • Any curry recipe always gets the thumbs up from me. I really need to start experimenting with coconut oil. I always use olive oil at the moment (I guess my Italian genes are showing!) but would like a change every now and then.ReplyCancel

  • Kate14/10/2014 - 10:08 pm

    I just found your website and this recipe at the perfect time – I just started Eat to Live and was looking for recipes that fit the eating plan and your recipe will fit right in. Thank you! I know there are different types of curry, is there a particular kind you used for this recipe?

    And I understand the need for quiet and to decompress. It’s totally human and healthy, and I commend you for recognizing it’s something you need and is important for you to do. I think more people need to make the effort to unplug and detach and see how great it feels.ReplyCancel

    • Laura Wright15/10/2014 - 2:03 pm

      Hello Kate! Thank you for your kind comment. Lovely of you to take the time. And in terms of curry powder, by default I always go for a mild-natured, non-sweet version. Just whatever generic, no name brand they have at the store usually does nicely for me :)
      -LReplyCancel

  • erin {yummy supper}15/10/2014 - 12:39 pm

    Laura, I totally hear you about the introvert extrovert thing…. reading your post today felt like you were expressing so many of my own thoughts and conflicts at the moment.

    It’s super easy to do the comparison thing… Have you heard the quote “Comparison is the thief of joy?” Ain’t that the truth? Nothing calms my mind like cooking for my family, being in the garden, breathing and taking in nature. It’s easy to forget the power of those things in the midst of all the social noise out there, but I keep trying to remind myself.

    Keep doing the beautiful, delicious, soulful work you do. I’m grateful for it.

    xoxo
    EReplyCancel

  • In The Pipeline - Chino House18/10/2014 - 7:05 pm

    […] this curry to my winter rotation this year for […]ReplyCancel

  • Ana21/10/2014 - 9:11 am

    This is my favorite recipe for a cozy autumn dinner. I simply love the kale photo!ReplyCancel

  • Lou22/10/2014 - 8:52 am

    This was AMAZING! I made it last night and I brought some today for lunch. What an amazing comfort food.ReplyCancel

  • Brande Plotnick30/10/2014 - 9:57 am

    I can’t wait to try this one! So much kale from the garden and I’m jonesing for SPICE. Thank you.ReplyCancel

  • Grace31/10/2014 - 7:18 pm

    I’m a newby to your site. I can’t even begin to tell you what a blessing it has been. This was the fourth thing I’ve made from your site and WOW!!! This soup is so flavorful. So hearty. So complete. My husband also loved it. This is my new fave.
    Thank you:)ReplyCancel

  • Reads and Recipes: November 101/11/2014 - 3:09 am

    […] Cauliflower, Kale + Chickpea Curry Pot from The First Mess         I would swap out the kale in favor of spinach. A big bowl of this looks so warm and cozy on a blustery fall day. […]ReplyCancel

  • […] temperatures hovering around 2 and 3 degrees makes me crave hearty home cooked meals. I came across this recipe on Pinterest and knew it would be perfect as soon as November hit. I’m really […]ReplyCancel

  • Audrey05/11/2014 - 4:05 pm

    This dish looks wonderful….would like to make it tonight !
    Just a question …. It says cooked chickpeas…. So I’m assuming dried and not canned. How did you cook the chickpeas??
    Or can I use canned?ReplyCancel

    • Laura Wright10/11/2014 - 8:39 am

      Hi Audrey,
      You could cook some dried chickpeas first, but canned ones are completely fine :)
      -LReplyCancel

  • johanna19/11/2014 - 11:02 am

    i made this last night, and it was AMAZING! I omitted the potatoes, realized too late I was out of chick peas, doubled the jalapenos (left in seeds and membrane – it gave it a little kick! perfect!) and put a half a lemon’s worth of juice in to kick up the flavors.

    it was a shame i was out of chickpeas, because i know it would have made it even heartier and more delicious. HOWEVER! it was still one of my favorite new recipes, and this is definitely going into my regular rotation.

    I am perusing some of your other recipes, and everything looks amazing. Thanks!!ReplyCancel

  • katie04/12/2014 - 1:36 pm

    I have a couple things in the fridge that will go bad soon and I knew I could come to your site for a hearty, healthy stew to put them to good use.

    Glad this is the recipe I clicked on, because I think I may have actually needed the words you wrote more than the recipe. Beautiful recipe, photos and words, as usual. Thank you.ReplyCancel

  • Lori04/01/2015 - 6:34 pm

    Just made this at it is amazing! I can’t wait to try some of your other recipesReplyCancel

  • Tesni05/01/2015 - 9:46 am

    Stumbled across this delightful recipe on my lengthy never ending search for the perfect vegetarian curry recipe… Well I think I’ve finally found the ! Absolutely delicious ! Will be checking this blog regularly from now on.
    xoReplyCancel

  • […] love one-pot meals, and coming across this blog and recipe, I was all for trying it out. Considering, I had all the ingredients, it was a no […]ReplyCancel

  • Thalia @ butter and brioche10/01/2015 - 12:57 am

    Love everything about this chickpea curry – think it would make such an awesome dinner for myself and my vegetarian family tonight. Thanks for the recipe!ReplyCancel

  • Katie04/03/2015 - 3:00 pm

    Girlfriend, you have got my dang number with this one. I have made this three times since you posted the recipe. I don’t often repeat recipes with that frequency, but I am in love with this meal. Twice I’ve made it for myself as my lunch for the week – at no point did I get sick of it. Once I doubled it and made a huge batch for a bunch of hungry friends after a day of skiing – they all loved it! Each time there have been slight variations, but it has been incredibly tasty nonetheless. I especially love that it’s a one pot meal! So little clean up! And so healthy! And SO delicious! Keep up the great work :)ReplyCancel

  • Sonya25/03/2015 - 8:13 pm

    Hooray for healthy one-pot meals! I made this tonight for the family and it was a hit! Even our 3 year old ate it:) It was so good, used ingredients we have on hand, and so simple. Love it, and thank you!ReplyCancel

  • Sonya25/03/2015 - 8:15 pm

    Hooray for healthy one-pot meals! I made this tonight for the whole family and it was a hit! It was so good, used ingredients we have on hand, and so simple. Love it, and thank you!ReplyCancel

  • Keri30/04/2015 - 6:19 am

    Just made this for dinner tonight and I loved it! I added 1 tsp of cumin because I love the flavor it brings to curry, and 1 tsp of crushed red pepper because I like a little heat. Nothing better than a good curry. Thanks for the recipe!ReplyCancel

  • […] found this recipe on my new favorite vegan blog, The First Mess. I followed her recipe almost exactly, just adding a couple of my own additions. I can’t wait […]ReplyCancel

  • Weekend Link Love |03/07/2015 - 12:49 pm

    […] Looking for a cozy recipe to whip up this weekend? Try this. […]ReplyCancel

  • Lauren10/09/2015 - 5:21 pm

    I absolutely loved this recipe!! I made it last night for my boyfriend who is a chef, and he devoured the whole bowl! I did however, make a few tiny adjustments; I added turmeric, cumin, coriander and cinnamon to the curry with the onions, and I used sweet potatoes instead of waxy potatoes. I also roasted the cauliflower and sweet potatoes beforehand and then added them in at then end. Thank you so much for this amazing recipe!!!ReplyCancel

  • […] Adapted from The First Mess […]ReplyCancel

  • Renee22/09/2015 - 10:40 pm

    This looks amazing.. I really wish someone would just make this for me tonight, I feel like it would definitely become a favourite of mineReplyCancel

  • […] my list of edifying reads for the second week in a row is the latest post from Laura which I won’t summarize because I think you should see it for yourself. […]ReplyCancel

  • Nina15/10/2015 - 4:34 am

    Hi, greetings from the UK. Love your blog! This curry looks amazing. I am hosting a ‘curry night’ this weekend and I going to add your fab recipe to the list of dishes I am preparing. Where I live I can only find bags of kale cut up (not on stems) any ideas of how much in weight to use in your recipe. It would speed things up for me as I don’t have time to experiment as I am making other dishes. Thanks in advance.ReplyCancel

    • Laura15/10/2015 - 7:23 am

      Hey Nina! I would use 3 solid handfuls of chopped kale for this.
      -LReplyCancel

      • Nina16/10/2015 - 3:56 am

        Hi Laura, thanks for the information and for replying to my question so quickly! Very much appreciated. Have a good weekend.ReplyCancel

  • […] slicing daikon. But this post concerns the second stupid thing I did that day which was make a fucking awesome vegetable soup for dinner and then leave it sitting on the element, and now for the stupid part, without turning […]ReplyCancel

  • Carolyn15/11/2015 - 8:16 pm

    Made this tonight, and it was soooooo good and warm and comforting!!!! I LOVE your blog and everything I’ve made so far has been wicked pissah. Thank you thank you thank you!!!!ReplyCancel

  • […] Cauliflower Kale + Chickpea Curry Pot from The First Mess […]ReplyCancel

  • […] 12. Cauliflower, Kale & Chickpea Curry […]ReplyCancel

  • Amber24/01/2016 - 10:40 pm

    Great recipe! It’s tasty and I find it filling enough to not need a starch (ie. rice, quinoa, millet) on the side.
    I added more ginger, bay leaves, and some cinnamon to kick it up a notchReplyCancel

  • Nicole30/01/2016 - 2:25 am

    I liked this recipe a lot, but it definitely did not make enough for 4-6. I’d say 3, tops. I’m doubling the recipe next time! Also, the potatoes cooked in about 20 minutes, not 40, but perhaps that’s because my pot isn’t that thick.ReplyCancel

  • […] 12. Cauliflower, Kale & Chickpea Curry […]ReplyCancel

  • […] 12. Cauliflower, Kale & Chickpea Curry […]ReplyCancel

  • […] I would love to dive into this Cauliflower Chickpea Curry Pot. […]ReplyCancel

  • Atari05/07/2016 - 7:46 am

    I made this tonight – it was delicious! Thanks for sharing this with the world.ReplyCancel

  • Andre08/07/2016 - 4:24 pm

    Can I use frozen red potatoes in lieu of regular ones?ReplyCancel

    • Laura08/07/2016 - 8:38 pm

      Yeah I think that would be okay. Might be best to thaw them out first though!
      -LReplyCancel

  • […] Cauliflower Kale Chickpea Curry Pot from The First Mess (L helped with this and was a big fan) […]ReplyCancel

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