Hi, how are you doing? Let me introduce myself to you. I’m a cauliflower - a cousin of the cabbage family. I expect you don’t know too much about me, except perhaps that I’m nice when covered in a creamy cheese sauce, so let me tell you more about me and my family.
As I said, we’re part of the brassica or cabbage family - which means we date back to ancient times. We have roundish heads (about 20cm wide), which are creamy-white to pale cream in colour and look like a fluffy white cloud. When cut in half we look like a dense rounded tree with the main white branch dividing into many small branches which end in a mass of white to creamy-white flower buds or ‘curds’.
Did you know?
Why Cauliflower is Good To Eat
How They are Grown and Harvested
We have large, spreading, green leaves at our base which surround, but do not completely cover, our central stalk which bears a large round tightly packed mass of white to creamy-white curds, so called because it looks like milk curds. If we were not covered with leaves while growing, instead of little white curds we would form lots of small, yellow inedible flowers.
We’re harvested when our head is still firm and has reached the appropriate size. A farmer will check our heads up to 5 times to ensure we’re ready to harvest which is done by cutting our stem off at ground level.
How to Keep Cauliflower
Prime Growing Areas
History of Cauliflower
Along with other vegetables, we were planted on Norfolk Island in March 1788. A letter exists from Governor Arthur Phillip, the first governor appointed by the British, to Sir Joseph Banks telling him that ‘colly flowers’ had been growing at Sydney Cove for weeks. We were also recorded as growing in a garden at The Rocks, Sydney, in 1803 with some being as large as 4.5 - 5.5kg. It’s obvious we were an essential vegetable in the early life of the colony.
Fun Ways to Eat and Cook Cauliflower
Remove any tough outer leaves at our base which can be used in soups and stir-fries. If any insects are present soak flowerets in water with 1 teaspoon each of salt and vinegar before cooking. Boil, steam, stir-fry or microwave, about 4-6 minutes, depending on quantity.
Try these cauliflower recipes for something different.
Cauliflower And Pecan Salad
Cauliflower And Tomato
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