Friday, February 6, 2009

Cauliflower The Most Versatile Veggie

I get excited every time I see cauliflower. Why? Because it's a vegetable you can do a million things with and each way is always so delicious. Not only that but certain grocery stores are having sales on it. That alone should make it popular in these dollar challenged times.

The plant is a member of the Brassicacae family and more specifically brassica oleraca and is a cousin to kale , Brussels sprouts and broccoli. it is a cruciferous veggie and is loaded with cancer fighting sulfurophanes. These keeps estrogen levels down as well as providing much needed Vitamin C and folate.Cauliflower also has sulphur containing phyto nutrients that help detox the liver. The vegetable is low in calories and an excellent diet food.

What I love about this veggie is its' versatility. It's pure heaven when it's breaded and fried. It's makes a nutty, creamy soup as well as being delicious in a light cream sauce. It adds to any big meal , complimenting poultry and beef. Cauliflower is also a good crudite. The little white florets are fun to snack on raw with a healthy dip such as olive oil and red pepper. It can even be used as a substitute for potatoes and you can make a mashed cauliflower dish. (it's known as fauxtato).

Buy cauliflowers now that they're in season. They're so versatile. You can make them fried for lunch and then save the rest for a warm creamy bisque for the weekend. They're the best food bargain out there right now.

Breaded Cauliflower Recipe (my mom's/family recipe)

1 medium sized cauliflower washed and broken into pieces

2-3 eggs beaten

1 cup plain breadcrumbs (you can add dashes of sea salt and cracked pepper to this if you like)

4 tablespoons margarine and two tablespoons olive oil for frying.

Boil cauliflower in unsalted water for about ten minutes . DON'T overcook or the pieces will fall apart in tiny bits. After boiling, drain and cool.

While the cauliflower is cooling off heat margarine and olive oil in a skillet over a low flame. Dip cauliflower florets in egg until evenly coated and then dredge in breadcrumbs. Fry until brown. You should have fifteen large pieces of cauliflower.

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