Who knew the humble cauliflower would have such a moment of glory - it's everywhere right now! Cauliflower rice, mash, pizza bases, fritters, tortilla chips – to name but a few. Rightly so too - this versatile veggie packs a punch on the health front. Sadly most cauliflower recipes only call for the florets (white, flowery bits) and the poor old stems and leaves don’t get a look in. As a total stickler for not wasting good food, this I’m afraid is just not cricket! So here you have an easy peasy, creamy and delicious way to use those perfectly healthy stems and leaves.
- CAULIFLOWER AND SPINACH SOUP -
- Stems, stalk and leaves from 1 cauliflower, chopped.
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 1-2 cloves of garlic, minced (or use a crusher)
- 2 celery stalks, chopped
- 2 large handfuls of spinach, washed
- 1 litre of vegetable or chicken stock
- Pinch of sea salt
- Pinch of black pepper
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- Optional; 1 heaped tsp dried oregano and pinch of chilli flakes.
- Melt the coconut oil in a large casserole.
- Fry the onions on a low heat until softened. Add the herbs if using.
- Add the garlic, cauliflower, celery stalks and cook for a further 5 minutes.
- Pour in the stock, bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes with the lid on, until tender.
- Throw the spinach in at the end and cook for a minute or two until wilted.
- Season with salt and pepper, and lemon juice to your taste.
- Use an immersion blender or blender to blitz until desired consistency. I personally prefer it with a little texture and bite, but smooth is also delicious.
Did you know that one serving of cauliflower is reported to contain 77% of your recommended vitamin C? In fact, cauliflower is loaded with vitamins and minerals - vitamin K, protein, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, magnesium, phosphorus, fiber, vitamin B6, folate, pantothenic acid, potassium, and manganese. The health benefits of this versatile flower-power go on! It contains sulforaphane, which has been reported to have anti-cancer effects, improve blood pressure and kidney function thus boosting cardio-vascular health. Cauliflower is anti-inflammatory, aids the body's detoxification systems, has an abundance of dietary fibre, antioxidants and phytonutrients. Those stems don't seem quite so useless now eh? So go on, give stem a try! ;-) (Sorry - couldn't resist!)