A cousin of broccoli, kale, cabbage and collards, cauliflower is a cluster of hundreds of immature flowers bonded together in little lumps that form the head or “curd.” The flowers are attached to a central stalk, and when broken apart, cauliflower looks a bit like a tree with cruciferous (cross-shaped) branches. Traditionally, cauliflower is pure white. It has a sweet, nutty flavor that becomes more pronounced when cooked, particularly when roasted.
One cup of chopped raw cauliflower is loaded with vitamin C—a whopping 77 percent of your daily needs—which helps prevent cellular damage, aids iron absorption and reduces cholesterol. It is also an excellent source of dietary fiber for digestion, vitamin K to promote blood clotting, vitamin B6 for metabolism and choline, a B vitamin known for its role in brain development. Cauliflower contains small amounts of calcium, iron, magnesium and potassium, too.
SELECT & STORE
When buying cauliflower, look for a clean, creamy-white, compact curd in which the bud clusters are not separated. Heads surrounded by many thick, green leaves are better protected and will be fresher. Its size is not related to quality, so choose one that best suits your recipe needs. Store uncooked cauliflower in a paper or plastic bag in the refrigerator; it will keep for up to one week.
Cauliflower can be eaten raw for dips and salads. Cook it by steaming, roasting or stir-frying for best flavor. Don’t discard the smaller leaves surrounding the curd; add them to soups or stir-fries. Some fun ways to serve cauliflower: cauliflower “steaks” (slice a head into thick slabs, coat with olive oil and bake on a parchment-lined baking sheet at 400° for 15–20 minutes); or cauliflower “rice” (chop up a head in a food processor; serve raw or sauté for a few minutes in olive oil).
TRY THESE RECIPES
Root Vegetables with Cauliflower Curry Sauce Over Spiralized Zucchini
“Cheesy” Cauliflower Tater Tots
Cauliflower Pizza Crust with Sun-Dried Tomato and Roasted Pepper Sauce
Live Naturally is excited to partner with Bauman College, whose students created these recipes. Bauman is committed to spreading wellness through the healing power of fresh, whole food. Their programs equip students with the tools necessary to support people−locally and globally−in achieving optimal health. For more info, visit baumancollege.org.