Sprouting Green Cauliflower
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Sprouting Green cauliflower is the second growth or overgrowth of the regular, large heads of cauliflower. They produce more elongated, thinner stalks of uneven lengths, up to 10 centimeters long, with clusters of tiny green flowers at the top. Like regular green cauliflower, the stalks are firm and tender, the florets offer a soft and crumbly texture. The entire head, its stalk and florets, are edible. Sprouting Green cauliflower has a mildly sweet flavor with nutty tones.
Green sprouting cauliflower is available in the early spring.
Sprouting Green cauliflower develops once the main cauliflower head has been harvested but can also be the result of rapid maturation due to extreme changes in temperature. Green cauliflower is a hybrid cultivar of Brassica oleracea var. botrytis that was created through a cross between cauliflower and broccoli. The smaller, flowering florets of Sprouting Green cauliflower are not seen often in the market and have limited availability.
Sprouting Green cauliflower is an excellent source of vitamins C and K and folate. It is a good source of B-complex vitamins, manganese, phosphorus, and fiber and contains some protein, potassium and magnesium.
Sprouting Green cauliflower can be eaten raw or cooked and can be used in any recipe calling for cauliflower or broccoli. Steam, sauté, or roast the florets. Cook the florets for shorter periods of time for the best flavor and texture. Florets can be blanched and tossed lightly with oil or butter and herbs and added to salads. Add Sprouting Green cauliflower to pastas, rice or other grain dishes. Pickle the florets with other vegetables or on their own for salads, snacking and crudité platters. Store Sprouting Green cauliflower in the refrigerator for up to a week. Blanched florets can be frozen and stored for up to six months.
Sprouting Green cauliflower often gets tossed into the waste barrel as most commercial farmers are clearing their fields for the spring planting. They typically only produce sprouting heads if overwintered or allowed to grow to full maturity and begin to set seeds. Occasionally the curds at the tops of the heads will turn white.
Green cauliflower was developed in Salinas, California in the early 1980s and was first marketed in 1989. They were introduced under the name “Broccoflower” which was a designated trademark from 2005 through 2018. There are several named cultivars of Green cauliflower, such as Verdi, Vitaverde, and Green Macerata. Cauliflower is native to the northern Mediterranean, eastern Europe, and what is now Turkey. It requires cool growing conditions and prefers areas that are in a temperate range and is very sensitive to changes in temperatures. Too much heat during the end of the growing season will result in flowering heads. Sprouting Green cauliflower is most likely spotted at farmer’s markets and on restaurant menus in temperate growing regions.
Recipes that include Sprouting Green Cauliflower. One is easiest, three is harder.
|My New Roots||Roasted Cauliflower with Caramelized Onions|