Cauliflower is one of the more recognizable vegetables out there. People remember it for its similarity to broccoli with some people calling it the “white broccoli.” While similar in structure and part of the same species, cauliflower and broccoli do also have a lot of differences. The first thing people will notice is the difference in color. However, while most people around think that cauliflower comes only in white, it actually comes in two other surprising colors as well. While hard to find in supermarkets, you’ll be able to find those varieties in other parts of the world. Purple cauliflower grows in Europe and is that color because of the high level of an antioxidant called anthocynanin that it contains. What other color of cauliflower might there be? If you guessed orange then you are correct. However, orange cauliflower is not only different than its cousins, it also contains 25 times more vitamin A making it an especially attractive vegetable to those who enjoy eating healthy veggies.
Cauliflower can be eaten raw or cooked and is prepared in a number of styles. A lot of people like eating it raw with some sauce on the side, i.e. carrots and celery. It is also enjoys a place on the menus of Chinese restaurants in a lot of stir-fry dishes. Now with the healthy dining trend, many restaurants are boiling vegetables however boiling cauliflower harms its anti cancer properties. Boiling cauliflower for a mere 5 minutes causes it to lose 20-30% of those properties and 75% is lost when boiling for half an hour. It is also full of indole-3-carbonal, a chemical that aids in DNA repair. But, aside from all those delightful properties, cauliflower is just plain delicious and can be used to make great vegetarian dishes like Broccoli & Cauliflower Stir-fry.
Broccoli & Cauliflower Stir-fry
2 tsp. oil
2 tsp. chopped garlic
11/2 c. broccoli flowerets
11/2 c. cauliflower flowerets
8 oz. canned straw mushrooms liquid removed
1/2 c. nonfat chicken broth
2 tbsp. oyster sauce
2 tsp. sesame oil (optional)
1/4 tsp. white pepper
1 tsp. cornstarch
2 tsp. water
1. Heat a wok over high heat till warm. Add in the veg. oil and garlic and stir fry for 10 seconds. Add in the broccoli, cauliflower, and mushrooms, and stir fry for 30 seconds. Add in the chicken broth, cover and cook till the vegetables are crisp-tender, about 3 min.
2. Add in the oyster sauce, sesame oil (if using) and pepper and cook for 1 min. Add in the cornstarch solution and cook, stirring till the sauce boils and thickens.
NOTES : This is a basic dish. The yin-yang color and similar texture make this a great vegetable side dish for any meal.www.cookeatshare.com