The White Broccoli
There is a white broccoli-type vegetable known as cauliflower, but I like to call it cauli. I love, love, love it. It has been a mission of mine to find it for quite a while now. Sometimes I would be able to locate it at the Whole Foods stores. However, it is not in the other supermarkets (e.g. Super Stop and Shop, ShopRite).
Where are you cauli??? Why are most supermarkets not carrying this wondrous versatile vegetable?
The Italian restaurant that we used to frequent for takeout had it as an option for a side dish. I always looked forward to having it. It tasted so good. However, like many other foods that I enjoy, it is not always available.
Lately, because of its inaccessibility, I am trying to figure out why I love cauliflower so much, or why I like it more than broccoli. I think it is because it is so refreshing to eat. Broccoli has a subtle taste to it, but not cauli. It is such a malleable vegetable. What I mean is, cauliflower is so easy to flavor. It adopts whatever seasoning one is working with and it easily used for other things. For example, it is great as a substitute as mashed potato or pizza dough.
Of course, not surprisingly, cauliflower has a multitude of health benefits. In addition to the fact that it is significantly less caloric than let’s say potato or flour, it also has numerous vitamins, at fifteen. It is also high in dietary fibers, folate, water, and vitamin C.
To satisfy my curious mind, I did a little look-see on the web. As it turns out, this white bundle is very expensive to cultivate. This is because the curd (the flower or edible part of the vegetable) needs to be shielded by leaves in order for it to be white. This requires additional attention from the grower, hence its high price and limited availability.
Although white is the most common color of cauliflower, it can also come in other colors such as, orange, green, or purple. I am very adventurous, but I have not been tempted to try the other colors. This is probably because the color white just draws me in. It gives the perception of purity and wholesomeness. It reminds me of a blank canvas waiting for creations and to be reinvented.
Cauliflower can be eaten raw, but I do not like it this way. I prefer it cooked. Since I am usually pressed for time, I like blanching and then seasoning it with soy sauce and a few drops of sesame oil or placing slices of cheese on top of the steaming bunch. May I say YUM?!!
During course of learning more about this lovable vegetable, I learned that the best way to enjoy cauliflower is to have it raw, steamed, or stir-fried. Apparently, boiling it would significantly reduce the wonderful nutrients it comes with.
Perhaps it is time to shell out a few more bucks considering how great cauli is. It is an investment in myself : ) After all, health is the most precious wealth. Maybe you will too?