Nutrition – culinary ideas for cauliflower

Posted on 6 August 2014

… a regular nutrition series for vegans by Anastacia Sampson

When we are vegan, it takes creative ideas to turn our meals from the mundane in to “out of this world” gastronomically delights. Now let’s take a preview at the cauliflower vegetable!

Let's get creative with cauliflower - photo courtesy of Johan Bolhuis at Stock.XchngThis may seem an all-time boring veggie that we can buy fresh or frozen, but don’t be too quick to judge. By having innovative vegetable ideas, cauliflower can be prepared in diverse ways. There is so much more to this white creamy coloured vegetable than we give it credit for.

Did you know that this vegetable is a great supplier of antioxidants and vitamin K? Vitamin K is important for using calcium in our bones and it is needed for healthy blood clot formation. Sulforaphane is another special compound found in cauliflower. It is sulphoraphane which has been linked to having protective effects against cancer development.

Here are 5 versatile ways on how to incorporate this vegetable into your healthy lifestyle. These are stepping stones for you to bounce from in your meal preparations.

  1. For the quickest and easiest, enjoy it raw! Nibble on raw pieces of cauliflower as a snack. As this vegetable is low in calories and tends to have a bulking effect with its fibre content, it will promote healthy weight management and a sense of well-being through its nutritional content.
  2. How about cauliflower made into flour? Gluten free flours are becoming oh so popular. Well, it is possible to make your very own crispy vegetable pizza base by using cauliflower as part of the gluten-free flour ingredients.
  3. Then there is cauliflower mash, which can actually be extremely nourishing and yummy. Basically you cook up your cauliflower until soft, mash it up and mix it with anything from garlic, salt, pepper, spices and herbs for taste. Cauliflower is truly versatile; it just needs imagination to transform a mundane veggie into a gastric delight!
  4. For rice lovers, there is cauliflower ‘rice’. Grate cauliflower or place it in a food processor. Before you know it you are left with fluffy bits of cauliflower that can be enjoyed raw or lightly cooked. Yes, you can have a low carb, low calorie vegetable-based rice-like dish as an alternative to rice or couscous.
  5. Steamed cauliflower is also a great creamy soft snack or part of a main course meal. Steaming is a form of cooking with minimal loss of nutrients. Don’t forget that just 100g of cauliflower delivers over three quarters of our vitamin C requirements. Add spices, salt or herbs for flavour. You can even top it with your favourite sauce.

Take care, Anastacia

Visit Vegan SA for more information on vegan nutrition.


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