With Grandpa's cauliflower wisdom we'll learn about the history, cultivation, versatility, and nutritional value of a grand old cultivars.For best results organic gardeninginsures better nutritional value.
One of several vegetables in Brassicaceae family and species Brassica oleracea, an annual plant produced from seed. The head or curd of aborted floral meristems is eaten in a large verity of ways. The stalk and thick green leaves can be used in a vegetable broth. The name comes from the latin caulis (cabbage) and flower unusual in that most plants in this family are grown for their leafy greens.
A Highly Modified Plant
Originating in Italy and imported from Genoa to France in the sixteenth century they held an honorable place in the garden because of their delicacy. Rather rare in France until the time of Louis XIV they now are cultivated all over the world.
The Four Major Groups of Cauliflower are:
Diverse appearance, annual and biennial types. Includes white, Romanesco, various green, purple, brown, and yellow cultivars. This ancestral form is the type from which the others were derived.
Northwest EUROPEAN biennial
Grown in Europe for early spring and winter harvest. French nineteenth century development, Old cultivars including Angers and Roscoff.
Northern EUROPEAN annuals
North America and Europe use for winter and early spring harvest. German developed in the eighteenth century, includes the old cultivars Snowball and Erfurt.
Developed in India during the nineteenth century from the now abandoned Cornish type, it was a tropical cauliflower used in China and India. Old varieties include Panta and Early Benaras.
Best Known Varieties Include but are not Limited to
Some Traditional Varieties Include
Snowball, Hybrid White, Snow Crown-55 days, Mayflower, Super Snowball, Summex-40 days Snowball, Mormon, Candid Charm, Snow White, Snow Grace, Montana-45 to 55 days disease tolerant, Ravella 70 days produces well in cold weather keeps longer in garden, Silver Cup-40 days small heads excellent flavor and quality,White Express-40 days heat tolerant.
Early Tuscan, Late Tuscan, Self Blanche, Amazing-75 days medium size heads tolerates heat and cold stress. Apex-70 days variety for fall harvest heavy heads Early Dawn-68 days domed heads up to 2 ½ pounds
Early Pearl, All the Year Round, Early Snowball-55 days dating back to 1888 pick early to preserve quality Walcheren Winter, Violetta Italia.
Commercial Varieties Include
Igloo, Fremont-70 days (self blanching), and Snow Crown
A List Of Varieties that is very Comprehensive is Maintained at North Carolina State University
Colors Beside White Include
Green is sometimes called broccoflower or Broccliflower. Availability in both normal curd shape and and a variant spiked curd sometimes called Romanesco Broccoli. Commercially both types have been available in The US and Europe since the early 1990s.Romanesco's head is an example of a fractal image in nature, repeating itself in self similarity at varying scales. GREEN CURD VARIETIES INCLUDE Alverda, Green Godess, and Vorda Green Harmony-55 days Lime green, Panther-75 days best in fall large heads fusarium resistant, Verdi-55-65 days medium plant large heads. ROMANESCO VARIETIES INCLUDE Minaret, and Veronica-78 days,Green Macerata-70 days Italian heirloom apple green 2 pound heads
The purple color is caused by the presence of the antioxidant group anthocyanin, which can also be found in red cabbage and red wine. Varieties include Graffiti -75-80 days retains color when cooked, Purple Cape, Violet Queen-70 days looks like purple broccoli turns green when cooked Violetta Italia-85 days Italian heirloom large purple heads turn green when cooked and tastes like broccoli. In Great Britain and southern Italy, a broccoli with tiny flower buds is sold under the name "purple Cauliflower." It is not the same as standard cauliflower with a purple curd.
Orange cauliflower contains 25 times the level of Vitamin A of white varieties. This trait (orange) came from a natural mutant found in a field in Canada. Varieties include Cheddar-58 days also called Citrus retains orange when cooked 3 pound heads high in carotene not heat tolerant best for fall production, and Orange Bouquet.
Nutritional Value of 100 g (3 ½ oz
US Recommendations for Adults Source USDA Nutrient Database
Cauliflower is low fat, high in fiber, folate, water and Vitamin C, having a very high nutritional density. Sharing phytochemicals that can be beneficial to human health, including sulforaphane, a compound released when cauliflower is chewed or chopped which may protect against cancer. Boiling reduces the levels of these compounds, by up to 75% after only 30 minutes. However other cooking methods such as microwaving, steaming, frying, and stir frying have no significant effect on the compounds.
Along with other brassica vegetables, cauliflower is a source of indole-3-carbinol, a chemical that boosts DNA repair in cells and appears to block the growth of cancer cells. The compound also appears to work as an anti-estrogen, seaming to slow or prevent the growth of tumors of the breast and prostate.
Also containing other glucoinolates besides sulfurophane, substances which may improve the liver's ability to detoxify carcinogenic substances. A high intake of it has been found to reduce the risk of aggressive prostates cancer. It is also a good source of carotenoids.
Used by low carb dieters as a reasonable substitute for potatoes while they have a similar feel in your mouth (texture) they lack the starch of potatoes.