Chow Town

March 25, 2014

Cauliflower craze is heating up

Can kale really ever be replaced? Maybe not in nutrients, but in enthusiasm.

Chow Town

The daily dish on Kansas City's food and drink scene

Can kale really ever be replaced? Maybe not in nutrients, but in enthusiasm.

The cauliflower craze is spreading clear out to the fields where local farmers are planting more. All different colors are popping up from cheddar orange, to purple and neon green. Cauliflower is no longer blase, it is coming into it’s own.

Cauliflower has been projected to be the “It” vegetable of 2014 by multiple sources across the world. Since the Atkins diet craze, mashed cauliflower has graced the presence of several restaurant menus as a low-carb option.

Now diets and lifestyles like the Paleo diet have brought cauliflower back into the light. It is a fabulous substitute for calorie and starch-laden veggies. Just like a potato, cauliflower takes on almost any flavor.

The beautiful colors are turning heads of elementary school kids. Even if it’s just to ask, “What is that?” they are noticing the Brassica vegetable. Alas, it has been shoved aside while kale and beets took the center stage for the past few years, but now we have a multitude of recipes which will be life changing to the cauliflower world.

Cauliflower Caviar 4 cups (about two pounds) of cauliflower cut into 1-inch pieces 2 tablespoons of olive oil 3/4 teaspoon of pepper 1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt 4 ounces of prosciutto, sliced 1 garlic clove minced 1 tablespoon of lemon juice 1/4 cup of parsley chopped 1 pinch of nutmeg 1 zest of lemon 24 pieces Belgium Endive leaves

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Toss the cauliflower pieces with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, pepper and salt. Spread on a baking sheet and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until tender.

In a sauté pan heat the additional olive oil on medium high heat. Add the prosciutto and sauté until crispy, about 5 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic clove and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes. Add the lemon juice, parsley, nutmeg and lemon zest.

Mix well. Add the roasted cauliflower and roughly mash. Fill the endive leaves with the cauliflower mixture. Garnish with fresh herbs and feta if desired.

Cauliflower Poppers 1 head of cauliflower broken into florets 3/4 cup of seasoned breadcrumbs 2 tablespoon of Parmesan cheese 1 teaspoon of fresh thyme chopped 1 teaspoon of salt 1/2 teaspoon of pepper 4 each egg whites 2 tablespoons of Dijon mustard 3 tablespoons of water

Heat an oven to 400 degrees. Spray a baking pan with pan spray. Mix together the bread crumbs, Parmesan, thyme, salt and pepper, set aside. Whisk together the egg whites, Dijon and water. Dip the cauliflower florets into the egg white mixture and directly into the breadcrumb mixture. Place the breaded cauliflower florets on the baking sheet.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Serve with your favorite dip.

If you are curious about planting cauliflower in your garden find out

how to grow cauliflower


Renee Kelly is the owner of Renee Kelly’s Harvest in Johnson County. Her passion lies in changing the food system, one plate at a time. Her inspiration is Mother nature and the many growers in the Kansas City area.

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