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I'm not sure how many others feel this way, but I've always found cauliflower to be a comfort food, so I never think about how much nutrition is packed into the soft white vegetable. Yet just a half cup provides 46 percent of your recommended daily allowance of Vitamin C. It's also rich in potassium and fiber, making it a filling choice, and it's an excellent source of Omega-3s and Vitamin K, which helps regulate our anti-inflammatory responses.
Cauliflower is a member of the Brassica family. Its flowers have both male and female organs and are typically pollinated by bees. A descendant of the wild cabbage, rumored to have originated in Asia Minor, it appeared in the Mediterranean and was prevalent in Italy and Turkey since 600 BC. It was introduced to France in the 16th century, before gaining popularity and cultivation in Northern Europe, the U.S., France, Italy, and India.
My usual cauliflower recipes are simple and homey. I put American cheese on top and melt it for a few seconds, but the other night I was in the mood for something with a little more kick. I modified this Roasted Cauliflower recipe I found on Epicurious.com and definitely enjoyed the change of pace:
3 cups cauliflower florets
1/2 an onion, peeled, quartered
1/4 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/8 or less cup olive oil
1T red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon curry powder
1/8 teaspoon hot paprika or pinch of red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
Preheat oven to 450°F. Place cauliflower florets in roasting pan. Pull apart onion quarters into separate layers; add to cauliflower. Stir coriander seeds and cumin seeds in small skillet over medium heat until slightly darkened, about 5 minutes. Crush coarsely in mortar with pestle. Place seeds in medium bowl. Whisk in oil, vinegar, curry powder, paprika or red pepper, and salt. Pour dressing over vegetables; toss to coat. Spread vegetables in single layer. Sprinkle with pepper.
Roast vegetables until tender, stirring occasionally, about 35 minutes. (Can be made 2 hours ahead.) Let stand at room temperature. Mound vegetables in large bowl. Sprinkle with fresh cilantro. Serve warm or at room temperature.