Cauliflower Saute

November 16, 2011 - Written by Diana

I get overwhelmed with all of the seasonal produce at the farm market and I want it all.  My real problem is having enough time to cook it up before it goes bad.  When we were at the farm market last I bought heads of cauliflower that I used right away. I love cauliflower, but I think it can get over cooked and soggy easily, to me the flavor diminishes, and it’s not as tasty.  Here’s a way to cook fresh cauliflower and make it the center of the dish.  I like roasting, but this uses steaming on the stove top to start off.  Then a saute in a pan with some olive oil and some herbs.  I served it with some Sweet Italian sausage and grated parmesan.  Really tasty, my son, my husband and I finished it up quickly.

I added the sausage, to make it a one dish meal, but you can serve this as a side for any meal. I used the stove top, but you could roast it in the oven in a casserole dish.  I don’t like to heat up the oven for one casserole dish because it takes a lot longer and uses a lot of energy, but if you are cooking whole meal in the oven, roasting would be little work and delicious.

To prepare the cauliflower, I cored it by turning it upside down and cutting it out.  Then I sliced the florets off very close to the top so that all the buds fell off. I chopped the rest into smaller pieces, rinsed and drained.


In a saucepan put about a quarter inch of water and heat.  Place the cauliflower in the saucepan and put the lid on.  When the cauliflower is almost soft, drain.

In a saute pan, heat up a couple of tbs of olive oil.  Chop onion and garlic and saute.  Add drained cauliflower and toss with onion, garlic and oil in the hot pan. Chop parsley, add parsley, salt and pepper to the pan.  Grate parmesan over top of the cauliflower and heat until melted.


Purple (Cauliflower) Risotto

November 8, 2009 - Written by Diana

I made a Purple Risotto, I kid you not.  It had flecks of different color purples from dark blue purple on down to lavender.  If you have kids that love new colorful meals, this would such a cool dish for them to try.  My son, my husband and I all thought it was scrumptious, and we’d eat it again. Actually we will, because there are leftovers. 

My husband and I went to Lynd’s Fruit Farm just outside of Columbus.  We’ve been going there for apples in the fall plus other fun things.  This was the last weekend of the sale tent and we didn’t want to miss out. They have such cool things available like purple cauliflower, purple broccoli, purple Brussels sprouts – okay, not purple brussel sprouts – just green, pumpkins, gourds and apples.  While we were there, we actually got to be part of an apple tasting.  One gentleman said they were trying out a new apple and we should taste 4 different types and rate where they landed on a piece of paper.  After we placed the apples on the paper in the proper like/dislike square (it was a range), he marked where they landed, and told us the one we liked best was 1238.  There’s only one tree in the world with those apples, and they developed it.  That apple was really delicious and sweet, though he said it was a tart apple.  I hope they plant more of these trees.  As a thank you, we were able to pick out some gold rush apples to take home.  Cool!

I love the bright purple Cauliflower (no, of course I don’t have a before picture) though I’ve never used it before today.  I was really pumped to see that the color when the cauliflower didn’t disappear, but changed as I cooked.  I first boiled the cauliflower in a pot of water, so that I could use that water as the base for the risotto.  The water turned blue purple, but when poured in with the arborio rice, it turned lavender.  So all of these purples – dark blue down to light lavender are in this risotto and make it so pretty.  A few green herbs thrown really pop.  Then I strained the water out into another pot and let the cauliflower cool long enough to be able to dice it up.

Purple (Cauliflower) Risotto



In a pot large enough to hold the whole head of cauliflower, boil until almost done but still firm.  Strain the water (it will be blue purple) into a second pot and place that on the stove on low heat to keep warm.  In large deep skillet heat oil, sauté onions and garlic. Pour in white wine, and stir until evaporated.   When the onions and garlic are tender but still firm, add in the arborio rice, and stir for about a minute.  Then pour in one to two cups of purple cauliflower water.  Let it soak up the water, then add more. Meanwhile mince the cauliflower head.  Add more purple water to the rice slowly, until it is just about risotto ready.  Mix in the cauliflower, throw on some salt, pepper, the herbs and add on top the grana padano. 


Deb, you’ve got to try this – T would love it.