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11 Apr 2007

Curds of the Cauliflower

Cauliflower originated in Asia, was an important vegetable there and in Turkey and Italy for over thousand years. It became popular in Western Europe around the 16th Century. It is part of the cruciferous family of broccoli, cabbage and kale. Commonly it is creamy white in color but now purple and green varieties have been developed. It is made up of rounded masses of curds (undeveloped florets) surrounded by green leaves.

It is an excellent source of vitamin C, vitamin K, folic acid and dietary fiber. Cauliflower is also a good source of the B vitamins, manganese, tryptophan, phosphorus, omega_3, potassium and magnesium.

Like all cruciferous vegetables it contains phytonutrients and enzymes that help with neutralizing toxic substances and aid in detoxifying the body. Studies have found that that cruciferous vegetables also contain compounds which aid in cancer prevention. Cauliflower also contains allicin, which can improve heart health and reduce the risk of strokes and 13C (Indole-3-Carbinol) which is said to help prevent breast cancer.

Cauliflower stores well in the vegetable department of the fridge for up to 5 days. It can be eaten raw in salads, steamed, boiled, roasted and added to stews, curries and casserols.

So pop this versatile vegetable in your trolley the next time you shop.

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Cauliflower is nothing but cabbage with a college education. Mark Twain

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Cauliflower and Orange Salad
From Cauliflowers
Orange and tarragon adds a very strange and unusual flavor combination to this fresh green salad.

1/3 cup cold pressed oil
1/4 cup orange juice.
2 tbsp Tarragon vinegar.
1/2 tsp dried tarragon leaves.
1/4 tsp pepper.
1/2 tsp salt.
2 cups cauliflower florets (curds)
2 zucchini (courgettes) sliced.
1/2 xup chopped green onions.
8 cups mixed salad greens.

Get a small jar with a screw on lid and put in the oil, juice, vinegar, tarragon, salt and pepper. Shake them well together to get a good mix. Cook the cauliflower in florets for about 1 min in boiling water then drain and place in a large bowl. Pour salad dressing over the warm cauliflower and toss. Add remaining ingredients except salad greens, toss, then cover and refrigerate for 2 hours. Add salad greens, toss and serve.

Hurry Curry Cauliflower Pickle
From Razzle Dazzle Recipes

1 tablespoon canola oil
1 teaspoon cumin seed
1 teaspoon coriander seed
2 teaspoons curry powder
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced
1 whole clove garlic, smashed
1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
1 cup water
1 cup rice wine vinegar
1/2 cup cider vinegar
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon pickling salt

Heat the canola oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat. Crush the cumin seed with the coriander seed and add to the pan. Add the curry powder, ginger, and garlic to the pan. Cook these spices, stirring until the oil colors and the spices are fragrant. Add the cauliflower florets to the pan and toss to coat. In a lidded plastic container, combine the water, rice wine vinegar, cider vinegar, sugar, and pickling salt. Shake to combine. Once the cauliflower is slightly tender, add it to a glass jar. Pour the pickling liquid over the cauliflower, filling to the top of the jar. Cool, chill, and store the pickles for 1 week to allow the flavors to develop thoroughly. Makes 1 quart.

Hungarian Cauliflower Bake
From Vegan Chef

8 cups cauliflower, cut into florets
3 tbsps safflower oil
3 tbsp unbleached flour
1 cup soy milk, rice milk, or other non-dairy milk of choice
1 cup tofu sour cream
2 tbsps freshly chopped parsley
2 tbsps freshly chopped dill
1 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
1/3 cup breadcrumbs
Hungarian paprika, for garnishing

Lightly oil (or spray with a light mist of oil) a large casserole dish and set aside. Place the cauliflower florets in a steamer basket and steam for 5-6 minutes or until crisp tender. Transfer the cauliflower florets to the prepared pan and set aside. In a saucepan, whisk together the oil and flour until it forms a smooth paste. Whisk in the soy milk and cook the mixture over low heat, while whisking constantly until thickened, about 2-3 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat. Whisk in the tofu sour cream, parsley, dill, nutritional yeast flakes, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Pour the mixture over the cauliflower, then sprinkle the breadcrumbs over the sauce, and generously sprinkle the Hungarian paprika over the top of the breadcrumbs. Bake at 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until the sauce is bubbly and the top of the casserole is golden brown.
Serves 6-8

Roasted Cauliflower Recipe
From Cathy Wong of About.com

2 bunches of cauliflower, cut into florets
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
sea salt to taste

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place the cauliflower, olive oil, and salt in a large bowl and toss. Place in a large roasting pan in the oven for 30 minutes. 6-8 servings.



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16 comments:

Brian said...

Those things might be awesome if served with a big, juicy steak!

Marion said...

Roasted cauliflower, cooked to unbelievable sweetness, with a little blue cheese melted on top...yum!

Cauliflower is a staple in my kitchen...I use it in everything!

Urban Vegan said...

can never get anough cauliflower. my favorite is pasta with cauliflower with loads of garlic and cayenne pepper.

brian is right--this would all be great with a big juciy seitan steak. yum!

bazu said...

With all the reminders to use green and colorful vegetables, we have to be reminded that white vegetables also have loads of nutritional value!

Mmmm... tofu steak, grilled to perfection. Brian, you rock.

KleoPatra said...

What a great quote from Mark Twain! i hadn't any idea he ever said that.

brian and U.V. are right... this would be great with a big hunk o'seitan steak!!

Y'know what i did last time i had cauliflower (and also did it w/a head of broccoflower recently, but the results were not as tasty): i microwaved it for a couple of minutes, then threw it in a blender, added some plain rice milk, some spices i had on hand and enjoyed it like mashed potatoes. I don't know what inspired me to do it, maybe because it had been sitting in my refrigerator for like two weeks, staring at me forlornly every time i opened the fridge up... but it was some of the best cauliflower i've ever eaten. And i've never been the biggest fan of caulifower...

Nice to read a little more about this maligned (by me, i'm embarrassed to write) veggie that is bursting with health... time to give it more of a place in my diet. Thanks Jackie...

Johanna3 said...

nice info!

bazu said...

Hi Jackie,

I just came back to let you know that you don't have to wait until next year to nominate blogs in the Blogger's Choice awards- you can nominate people now, if you want. The process seems to be on-going.

Thank you so much for your comment and your vote!

Princess Haiku said...

Some people have trouble eating cauliflower. Is there another vegi with similar benefits?

Jackie said...

The same family as cauliflower does, that is broccoli, cabbage and kale.

Didn't realize cauliflower could be a problem being such a bland vegetable.

All veggies have many nutrients, some differing from others, but if you have a variety of veggies each day you will get everything you require.

aTxVegn said...

I love cauliflower, esp. roasted. I haven't marinated it in a while, so thanks for reminding me how good it is in salads.

david santos said...

Very good cauliflower, Done Jackie. Thanks for you post.
Have a good weekend.

Mihl said...

Hello Jackie, thank you very much for including my blog in your "favourite websites" lists. You were the first one to do this. By the way, I really like your blog and the way you organize it! And of course, I do love cauliflower too.

Midwest Vegan said...

As always, I always learn so much from your posts. I love cauliflower probably because my mom always served it in a cream sauce when I was growing up. Now, I just like it steamed with a little Earth Balance but that roast cauliflower sounds pretty good too.

Dirty Butter said...

The roasted cauliflower does sound especially good, and easy to fix, too. We eat a lot of this veggie, so thanks for the recipes.

Gaia said...

Hi Jackie !
I love the Mark Twain quote ! LOL

I am very interested in the Cauliflower with Orange and Tarragon Salad ! I'm printing it now :))

Thanks so much, once again :)

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