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How to Cook Cauliflower
The cauliflower head contains small, tightly compact white florets on thick stems. The entire plant is edible, including the leaves.
Availability: All year; peak October and November.
Buying Guide: Look for a creamy white head with tightly packed, crisp flowerets. Leaves should look bright green. Avoid heads with brown spots or dry leaves.
Storage: Refrigerate in original packaging or in a plastic bag up to 4 days.
History: When this advanced cabbage is growing, its large green leaves are wrapped around its head to block the sunlight and 'blanch" it, or keep it white. Cauliflower can also be purple, which is common in southern Italy.
1. Cut leaves from cauliflower by slicing through stem between head and leaves with chef's knife; remove and discard leaves and stem.
2.Cut around core with paring knife, being careful not to separate florets from head; remove and discard core. Rinse.
3.Pour 1 inch of water into large saucepan. Place cauliflower in water, stem side down; cover. Bring to a boil over high heat; reduce heat to low. Simmer 10 to 12 minutes until crisp-tender; drain. Place cauliflower in 8 X 8-inch baking dish.
Prepping Cauliflower Florets
When most people prepare cauliflower, they only want to use the florets.
1.Cut leaves from cauliflower by slicing through stem between head and leaves with chef's knife. Remove and discard leaves and stem.
2.Cut around core with paring knife; remove and discard core.
3.Break head into pieces, using a utility knife, if needed.
4.Cut pieces into bite-size florets with tip of paring knife.