Cauliflower is your new spud
Posted by Andrea Nakayama
Whew! I’ve been a busy bee these past few weeks – welcoming in hundreds of health practitioners to the Holistic Nutrition Lab curriculum for teaching and mentorship.
We’ve been deep in our studies of the digestive system and how the health of this system relates to every other sign, symptom and system in the body.
It’s amazing stuff we’ve got going on in our guts, as I know you may already know —whether you’re a practitioner, someone who has thought consciously about your own health or a lover of good food.
(Or maybe you’re like me and you’re all of the above!)
What this means for you if you’re someone who has thought consciously about your own health…
There is a movement of change across the globe—one that will support you in your quest for your best health and that will influence all the other practitioners around you to look up and finally pay attention to the role of diet in health, as you may have been begging them to do.
And what this means for you if you’re a lover of good food…
Rock on! All is good.
Read-on to get acquainted with your budding new friend (move over spud)…
P.S. We’re now accepting new clients into our Nutrition Counseling Services. Click here to learn more!
creamy cauliflower soup
This is my twist on a recipe from Tess Master’s inspiring cookbook, “The Blender Girl: 100 Gluten-Free Vegan Recipes”.
Now hold on!
Whether you’re vegan or not, this book is a gem and a favorite on my shelf.
It includes a host of information on picking and caring for your blender, soaking and sprouting your nuts and seeds for optimal digestion, a dairy-free milk how-to cheat sheet, and smoothie recipes that have inspired me to reignite the blender girl in myself.
While I have to confess that I de-veganized Tess’ Cauliflower Soup by using a bone broth, you can take this soup any way you want it to go. It’s versatile, easy and oh so yummy.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons chopped garlic (about 2 cloves), plus more to taste
- 2 cups chopped leeks (white parts only, from 2 to 3 leeks)
- sea salt
- 1 head cauliflower, chopped
- 7 cups broth (of your choice, my alteration to the recipe)
- 1/4 cup raw unsalted cashews or almonds, soaked
- 3 tablespoons chopped chives or grating of nutmeg (optional: choose one, not both), to garnish
In a large saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat and saute the garlic, leeks, and 1/4 teaspoon of salt for about 3 minutes, until the vegetables are soft. Add the cauliflower and saute for another minute. Add the (vegetable) broth, increase the heat to high, and bring just to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for about 30 minutes, until the cauliflower is completely tender. Stir the mix periodically and mash the cauliflower with a wooden spoon.
Remove the saucepan from the heat and allow the soup to cool (slightly); stir in the nuts. Pour the soup into your blender in batches and puree on high for 1 to 2 minutes, until smooth and creamy. (Remember to remove the plastic cap in the blender top and cover the opening with a kitchen towel so steam can escape while you blend,) Return the soup to a saucepan and warm it over low heat. Stir in salt to taste.
To serve, ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with either chopped chives or grated nutmeg. Serves 6 as a starter, 4 as a main.
cauliflower is your new spud!
In case you haven’t noticed, cauliflower is replacing many-a carb on the plate. Recipes for cauliflower mashed “potatoes” and cauliflower “rice” are freckling the internet. A quick search on Pinterest for each of those dishes yielded hundreds of recipe results.
Many are ditching the spud with their effort to eat a lower carbohydrate or lower glycemic diet to support overall health. Both intentions are commendable for those struggling with chronic disease or their precursors. While cauliflower has only a smidge more protein than potatoes, the fiber content is higher and the carbohydrate content is significantly lower. This last reason is the #1 explanation for why cauliflower is flying off the farmer’s market tables.
All good news for those of us who miss our mash!
The Health Benefits of Cauliflower
- Cauliflower is high in vitamin C, helping to support your spring immunity. The stems are higher in this vitamin than the florets, as they’re storing the nutrient for the blossoms. Don’t toss the stems!
- Cauliflower is among the family of cruciferous vegetables. These veggies include a class of chemical compounds called glucosinolates and isothiocyanates, which break down into biologically active compounds that are studied for possible anticancer effects.
- Among the cruciferous veggies, cauliflower is one of the highest in water content. It also has a significant amount of soluble fiber, making it beneficial for managing both blood sugar and cholesterol levels.
- The cruciferous veggies, with cauliflower among them, have also been shown to have anti-inflammatory, anti-estrogenic, and pro-detoxification properties.
- Speaking of detoxification, cauliflower contains several B vitamins (nutrients we might miss from our grains, if we go grain-free), including folate. These vitamins are needed for both liver and brain health.
- While cauliflower is lower in chlorophyll than it’s kissing cruciferous cousins, the orange, purple and green Romesco varieties (we call that last one “alien broccoli” around here), do contain more beta-carotene.
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