By Bronwyn Ison

Cauliflower is an inconspicuous vegetable. You may be surprised by the plethora of health benefits this cruciferous veggie packs. Commonly recognized on crudite’s platters, the cousin to broccoli, kale, cabbage and collards, the crunchy vegetable provides nearly 80 percent of your daily vitamin C. Cauliflower, for me, has been a yummy summer veggie. I decided to learn more about this delicious snack and I couldn’t resist sharing the good news.

Did you know Cauliflower is a cluster of immature flowers? Like broccoli, it resembles a small tree. Eating one cup of the nutty flavored veggie satisfies a whopping 77 percent of your vitamin C daily requirement. With this abundant vitamin C, it is a catalyst to prevent cellular damage, aids with iron absorption and reduces cholesterol. Fiber can also be challenging to incorporate into our diets. Fortunately the veggie is an excellent source of fiber for digestion. Also, vitamin K and B6 play a role and help with metabolism and brain development. Cauliflower also has trace hints of calcium, iron, magnesium and potassium.

The veggie should be a creamy-white compact curd when selecting at the grocery store or farmer’s market. Don’t be fooled that bigger is better. The size is not germane to its quality. The more green leaves surrounded by the curd, the longer it will stay fresh. It will usually keep for one week in your refrigerator if placed in a plastic or paper bag. Generally, this vegetable is white but there are fun hybrids of cauliflower. This could be entertaining as well and add color to a dish.

Aside from eating it raw there are numerous delectable dishes that can be prepared. I’ve included a fun recipe for you to try at home. Prepare, enjoy, and think about all the goodness your body is receiving.

Root Vegetables with Cauliflower Curry Sauce over Spiralized Zucchini
Serves: Serves 4
Serve over spiralized zucchini noodles for a nutrient boost.

1 medium head cauliflower, cut into small florets, divided
½ sweet potato, diced
2 small carrots, diced
1 small parsnip, diced
3 tablespoons coconut oil, divided
¼ medium sweet onion, chopped
1½ cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons curry powder (or try recipe in the sidebar)
1 can (14 ounce) coconut milk, divided
Sea salt and pepper
Juice of 1 lime
2 medium zucchinis, spiralized
3 ounces baby spinach
Cilantro, for garnish

Preheat oven to 375°. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Place half of cauliflower florets and all sweet potatoes, carrots and parsnips on trays; roast 45 minutes, until vegetables are soft and slightly caramelized. Stir vegetables partway through to be sure they don’t burn. Set aside when done.

Make cauliflower curry sauce: Heat 2 tablespoons coconut oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onion; sauté 5–10 minutes, until translucent. Add garlic; sauté 1 minute, or until fragrant.

Add remaining cauliflower and curry powder. Cook 5–10 minutes, until cauliflower starts browning and begins to soften.
Add ¾ cup + 2 tablespoons coconut milk; simmer 10 minutes, until a fork easily pierces cauliflower.

Place in a blender; blend until smooth. Use remaining coconut milk to thin sauce to desired consistency. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Combine cauliflower curry sauce with roasted root vegetables in a medium skillet. Let simmer 10 minutes. Season to taste with lime juice, salt and pepper.

Melt remaining 1 tablespoon coconut oil in a large skillet. Add zucchini; sauté 3–5 minutes, until softened. Stir in spinach to wilt. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Toss root vegetables with zucchini noodles and spinach. Garnish with cilantro.

Bronwyn Ison is the owner of Evolve Yoga. 760.564.YOGA(9642)

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