Cauliflower, a simple unassuming vegetable that so many just walk right past at the market.
Many people I talk to say they never even think twice about this vegetable and have never tried anything but the boring, dry, florets that are often the last man standing on a veggie platter at a party and need to be drenched in ranch dressing to chew up.
I was this very person who gagged at the thought of choking down some raw pieces of this bland looking crumbly cruciferous vegetable up until about 10 years ago when I did my first cleanse and found a recipe for mock mashed potatoes and have been in love ever since.
This somewhat non-descript tasting veggie is so versatile for spicing up and turning into some wonderfully healthy and tasty dishes.
So what's so great about Cauliflower?
Here are my 5 top health benefits of cauliflower:
- Incredible source of vitamin C - Just 1 cup of steamed cauliflower provides about 90% of the RDA for the antioxidant powerhouse Vitamin C.
- Good source of fiber.
- Full of essential Folate and Choline necessary nutrients needed for proper brain development of a fetus, helping the body to create normal healthy red blood cells, assists in proper methylation, and supports nervous system function.
- It is in the cruciferous family of vegetables which means it has strong anti-inflammatory properties, liver cleansing ability, and cancer preventive properties as well.
- Good source of Vitamin K which helps with blood clotting, prevents anemia, cancer fighting, and builds strong bones.
Who woulda thought that this simple veggie would be so packed with goodness!!??
Now what can you do to make this taste good you ask? Well there are many ways you can eat this cleansing and healthy vegetable.
Here are a couple recipes to get you started! Try to get at least 3-5 servings of cauliflower in your diet each week.
Simply Garlic Mashed Cauliflower:
1 head cauliflower
3 TBSP grass fed butter or ghee
6 cloves garlic
Smoked Paprika (optional)
Cut cauliflower into florets and add to steamer along with peeled whole garlic cloves. Steam until soft and you can easily insert a fork. Place steamed cauliflower and garlic in food processor or high powered blender and start to puree adding in 1 TBSP of butter or ghee at a time while processor or blender running. When creamy scoop out into large bowl and season with sea salt and pepper and smoked paprika and serve.
Smokey Paprika Popcorn Cauliflower:
1 head cauliflower
5 TBSP melted Ghee
2-3 TBSP smokey paprika
1 TBSP Himalayan pink salt
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Cut up head of cauliflower into bite sized florets. In a large bowl add melted ghee, paprika, and salt and whisk until blended. Toss cauliflower pieces in mixture making sure all pieces get coated. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and lay pieces of cauliflower out in a single layer. Bake for about 30-40 minutes or until cauliflower begins to brown and you can stick a fork in it easily.
Can serve as is or with a homemade spicy aoli.
Roasted Cauliflower Herb Soup:
This recipe is originally adapted from www.forkknifeswoon.com and changed to meet cleansing, paleo, gluten free, etc requirements.
- 1 cauliflower head, roasted
- 1 sweet onion, chopped
- 1 leek, white and light green parts, chopped
- 1 cup celery (about two stalks), chopped
- 1 head roasted garlic, peeled
- 2 tbs olive oil
- 3 tbs ghee or grass fed unsalted butter
- 1 tbs fresh parsley, minced
- 3-4 sprigs fresh thyme, removed from stems
- 4 cups vegetable stock
- 1-1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp freshly-ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup coconut milk for creamier soup
- In advance -up to a day ahead- roast the cauliflower: Preheat the oven to 375º. Meanwhile, break down the head of cauliflower into individual florets. Layer the cauliflower on to a large, rimmed sheetpan. Drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Roast for 30-35 minutes, until the cauliflower is fork-tender and begins to brown. Remove from oven and let cool.
- In a large stock-pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat until it begins to shimmer. Add the onion, leeks and celery, and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent. Add the garlic, and using a wooden spoon, smash the garlic into a paste. Add the ghee or butter, parsley, thyme, salt and pepper. Stir to combine and let cook until the butter melts.
- Add the roasted cauliflower and vegetable stock. Stir to combine. Let the soup come to a boil, then turn the heat to low, and let simmer 15-20 minutes. Remove from heat, and using an immersion blender, blend the soup to a smooth consistency.
- If using, add the coconut milk stir to combine. Top with a sprinkle of fresh parsley and thyme.
I hope that you enjoy these recipes and feel free to leave a comment below or post a pic of your creation on our Facebook page!
As always.......In Good Health and Happiness,
Brandy Augustine PhD