If you haven’t heard the recent buzz, the commonly understated vegetable, cauliflower, has been named the ‘trendy’ vegetable for 2014 – and its health benefits are tremendous! Don’t worry – kale hasn’t lost any of its healthiness or anything, (and we’ll definitely still be including it in our diets when it’s in season this summer and early fall) it’s simply taking a minor hiatus after winning the spotlight for so long.
Unfortunately, cauliflower isn’t in season until June, but the months fly by and June will be here before we know it so it’s never too early to start planning! So why, you ask, should you jump on board with cauliflower? Here’s why:
5 Health Benefits of Cauliflower
- Cauliflower hosts an abundance of nutrients that your body needs for optimal function: vitamin B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), B5 (pantothenic acid), B6 (pyridoxine) and B9 (folic acid), vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin K, dietary fiber and minerals.
It’s an antioxidant
- Cauliflower is a great source of vitamin C and manganese, which are both powerful antioxidants. Antioxidants help combat oxidation (accelerated by stress, cigarette smoking, and alcohol), which can cause cell damage.
It helps with inflammation
- Cauliflower is rich in vitamin K and omega-3 fatty acids, both of which act as a direct regulator for our inflammatory response.
It provides cardiovascular support
- Because of cauliflowers anti-inflammatory properties, consumption of this vegetable protects against cardiovascular disease by decreasing the diameter of blood vessels allowing blood to pass more freely.
It aids digestion
- Cauliflower is high in dietary fibre, which is helps clean your digestive system and normalize bowel movements.
Our favourite place to eat cauliflower
If you’re in Vancouver, one of our absolute favourite local spots is a Lebanese restaurant called Nuba. We’ve written about Nuba before as they serve local, organic and fresh ingredients that are sought out and handpicked daily – but they also serve one of the finest cauliflower dishes in the city called Najib’s special: Crispy cauliflower tossed with lemon and sea salt, served with tahini. Sounds simple? It is. And entirely delicious!
Cauliflower in the kitchen
Cauliflower can be a great substitute for cream in soups, rice, tortillas, pizza crust, or even mashed potatoes making recipes vegan, low calorie and healthy! Nutritional chef and health coach, Mikaela Reuben also recognizes the importance of cauliflower and has created a wonderful Coconut Turmeric Cauliflower recipe:
Coconut Turmeric Cauliflower
- 1 ½ tablespoons coconut oil + 1 tablespoon to coat cauliflower
- 1 chopped shallot
- 1 inch ginger peeled and chopped
- 1 stalk lemongrass
- 6 kaffir lime leaves
- 1 head cauliflower
- 1 tablespoon turmeric powder
- 1 pinch sea salt
- If you can BBQ the cauliflower opt for this rather than broiling. If using oven, turn oven to broil, or turn on BBQ.
- Peel the outside leaf of the lemongrass off, pound or press the inside with a wooden spoon to help release aromas, and chop into smaller ½ inch pieces.
- Add coconut oil, shallot, and ginger to a medium-sized pot.
- Once the shallot has softened add lemongrass and kaffir lime leaf. Leave on low heat to simmer for about 30 minutes or longer.
- Cut the stem off of the cauliflower head. Cut the florets off of the stem making them approximately 1-2 inches big.
- Massage a little coconut oil onto the cauliflower and sprinkle with sea salt and put into the oven. Keep a close eye as the cauliflower as it won’t take long to cook.
- When the cauliflower is lightly browned take it out of the oven.
- Strain the contents of the pot and drizzle or toss through cauliflower.
- Sprinkle with sea salt and toss with turmeric until each piece is bright orange.
We hope we’ve inspired you to add cauliflower to your gardening program this year!
My Garden Footprint: Local. Sustainable. Social.