What do Cheddar, Purple Head, Graffiti, and White Cloud have in common? No, they're not names of characters in a "Toy Story" movie or the members of a punk band from the '80s. They're varieties of cauliflower! This nubby member of the Brassica genus often gets dismissed as a pale imitation of its heartier relatives, like broccoli and cabbage. But in truth, from white to vivid orange and purple, this veggie delivers as much flavor, nutrition, and eye appeal as its more popular relatives.
One cup is packed with 77 percent of your daily value of vitamin C, a dose of vitamin K, protein, fiber, and B vitamins like thiamin, riboflavin, and niacin, plus the minerals magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, and manganese. In addition, cauliflower and other cruciferous veggies deliver sulfur-containing chemicals that have been shown in lab studies to prevent cancer of the bladder, breast, colon, liver, lung, stomach, and prostate. When combined with curcumin, the active ingredient in the spice turmeric, this type of vegetable may lower blood pressure and improve kidney function.
So what's stopping you from rustling up some for tonight's dinner? Our favorite ways to cook cauliflower include:
• Coat the whole head with olive oil and a dry rub made from paprika, red pepper flakes, cumin, rosemary, salt, black pepper, and chili powder. Slow-roast it in a 275 degree F oven.
• Squeeze fresh lemon and sprinkle olive oil on the florets, then top with fresh garlic and lemon slices; cover and steam until tender over water that contains slices of fresh ginger.
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