Cauliflower deserves a star treatment on the menu as it is nutritious and can enhance a meal in many delicious, versatile ways. Cauliflower is available virtually all year round in Australia, particularly in the cooler months of autumn, winter and early spring.
Type of vegetable:
Cauliflower is a member of the Brassica family and is also known as a cruciferous vegetable, closely related to Broccoli, Cabbage and Kale. The name cauliflower means ‘cabbage flower’. When broken into separate florets they resemble miniature trees.
- 3 florets
- 1 cup raw or ½ cup cooked
- About 75g
According to the 2013 Australian Dietary Guidelines, most Australians only eat half the recommended quantity of vegetables. Like most vegetables, cauliflower is low kilojoule and nutrient dense and naturally delicious. Adding cauliflower to recipes provides a nutritious boost and can help meet the recommended daily serve of vegetables.
Cauliflower has a mild taste with a slightly nutty flavour. It has a crunchy texture when eaten raw, and can be pureed for a silky, creamy texture. It is often featured as a healthier alternative to potatoes or rice in a dish.
Companion flavours and foods:
Cauliflower is wonderfully versatile and tastes great with other vegetables too. Broccoli, Potato, Leek, Brussel Sprouts, Pumpkin, Chick Peas, Carrots are all complementary vegetables. Hard and soft cheeses, cream, French mustard, bacon, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper all enhance the flavour of cauliflower.
Cauliflower can be cooked and enjoyed in many ways. Whether roasted, pureed, mashed or added to your favourite soups, this nutrition-boosting vegetable deserves hero status in any dish. Bring out the natural nutty flavour as a puree, cauliflower ‘rice’, mashed cauliflower, or even a French-style gratin with a generous topping of cheese and creamy sauce. It also tastes great on its own and can be eaten raw, especially in salads.
Roasted Cauliflower is a delicious, comforting dish, and can be enhanced with a creamy cheese sauce. Smaller cauliflower florets roasted with olive oil, parmesan cheese and garlic salt look like ‘popcorn’ and make a nutritious finger food option. Cauliflower rice can be made using a food processor to produce a fine texture and then pan-fry or roasted with olive oil to give the grains the texture of steamed rice. Add breadcrumbs and cheese to the grains to make a cheesy cauliflower gratin.
After steaming or boiling until very tender, puree the cauliflower until it becomes silky in texture. Pureed cauliflower can be added as a hidden vegetable in mashed potato, or served as an alternative, healthier version of mashed potato.
Cauliflower makes a wonderful addition to any soup. When pureed, its silky texture makes a beautiful velvety, creamy soup, ideal for residents needing a smooth pureed texture.
Raw Cauliflower florets are delicious in salads and add a fresh crunch.
Cauliflower puree has become very popular over the years. Here is a very simple way to make it for your residents without all the bother of boiling cauliflower and peeling potatoes.
A budget friendly soup made with the creamy velvety texture of cauliflower - that helps to add volume and bulk up vegetable portions for your dinners.