Cauliflower Hot and Healthy with Recipes

cauliflower hot and healthy

Cauliflower - yes, cauliflower is one of the hottest food trends for 2015. Are you celebrating the elevated status of this cruciferous vegetable?

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My personal celebration with cauliflower began decades ago. It has long been one of my top five favorite foods, rubbing its florets with broccoli, Portobello mushrooms, Brussel sprouts, and red peppers. (My food favs are probably a bit out of the ordinary—you don’t see any chocolate or ice cream on the list, do you!)

My preference has nothing to do with the fact that cauliflower is (finally) enjoying the spotlight, so let it shine! If you have been avoiding this white vegetable or begrudgingly eating a forkful or two at a dinner party, now is the time to break out and give it the attention it deserves.

Cauliflower is innocuous enough to blend in and sufficiently bold to take on a challenge at the same time. According to celebrity chef Rachael Ray, “Cauliflower is a blank canvas that takes on any flavor or personality.” So forget the image of white bumps covered with melted cheese.

In fact, cauliflower comes in purple, green, and yellow along with white. It has escaped the au gratin image and can be grilled, baked, roasted, battered and fried, mashed like potatoes, made into rice, stirred into soups, juiced, and even mixed into smoothies.

Someone somewhere has probably made cauliflower ice cream. I may pass on that one.

Cauliflower nutrition
When it comes to nutrition, cauliflower has some impressive stats. One cup provides:
25 calories
77% of your daily requirement for vitamin C
20% vitamin K
14% folate
11% vitamin B6
3 grams of fiber
2 grams of protein
37 mg omega-3 fatty acids
And it registers 2 on the glycemic load scale, which makes it a great food for diabetics

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If you are ready to try what some are calling the “new kale,” you could go to a fancy restaurant or you could try some easy recipes at home. Perhaps you can even take one of them to your next potluck or dinner party.

Cauliflower recipes

Cauliflower Smoothie
1 cup chopped cauliflower
1 cup blueberries
1 cup red grapes (seedless)
1 cup vanilla soy milk or almond milk
Ice as desired
Blend in your food processor or blender and enjoy

Roasted Cauliflower
1 head cauliflower, trimmed and thinly sliced (don’t worry if it crumbles)
2 Tb extra virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
¼ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1 tsp curry powder
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Place the cut cauliflower in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Combine all the remaining ingredients in a small bowl and mix well. Drizzle the mixture over the cauliflower. Roast for 25 to 30 minutes, stirring twice. Serve immediately. Serves 4.

Grilled Cauliflower Steaks
1 large head cauliflower
2 Tb olive oil
1 tsp garlic powder
½ tsp dried oregano
½ tsp cayenne
¼ cup thinly sliced red onions

Preheat your grill to medium-low. Slice the cauliflower into ¾ to 1-inch thick “steaks.” Start at the center of the head and slice down from the top to the bottom. (You can use the remaining bits of cauliflower in another recipe.) Brush the slices with the olive oil and sprinkle the garlic, cayenne, and oregano. Place the slices on the preheated grill, cover, and cook until one side is brown (about 5 minutes). Turn the slices over, place the onion slices on the steaks, and cook the other side for about 5 minutes.

Be sure to try cauliflower mashed “potatoes” and cauliflower rice (along with some great recipes), which is a super rice alternative. Celebrate cauliflower!

Also read about The beauty of celery root

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