Purple cauliflower: benefits and properties of this garden variety
Purple cauliflower: beautiful and tasty
The purple cauliflower is a large vegetable, typically found in winter, resulted from the cross between broccoli cabbage, common cauliflower and a selection of fine Violetto di Sicilia cauliflower. The characteristic that distinguishes it is precisely the purple color that derives from anthocyanins of which this variant of cauliflower is rich.
It’s not about just a particularly aesthetically pleasing vegetable, but also a healthy and tasty one; the anthocyanins have antioxidants and anti carcinogenic properties and counteract the action of free radicals, strengthening the immune system; also, this vegetable is a source of vitamin C, vitamin A, fiber, calcium, mineral salts and potassium.
This vegetables is also particularly appreciated by women because of its beneficial and nourishing properties for epidermis: scientific studies have shown how its intake contrast, on one side, the aging of the skin and, on the other, the capillary fragility of tissues.
The purple cauliflower is a true cure-all able to embellish your dishes thanks to a color that makes it unique and a sweet taste that has it loved by palates all over the world.
Use in the kitchen of the purple cauliflower
The purple cauliflower, much like all the variants of the cauliflower, is an extremely versatile vegetable that is proposed as an excellent base for succulent and colorful dishes ranging from appetizers to first and second course and side dish.
For lovers of “aesthetically pleasing plates”, it is important to clarify that during the cooking of the vegetable, its chromatic tone tends to fade.
This variant of cauliflower is well suited to be the main food for the preparation of sweet tasting creams of a lively and cheerful color, but can also be perfectly combined with tomato and pancetta to create a sauce with an intense flavor. Baked au gratin with bechamel sauce it becomes a great vegetarian second course, while when steamed it retains all of its nutritional properties. Moreover, it can be used for the preparation of soups and risottos to which even the little ones won’t be able to resist.
Finally, much like all the other cauliflower variants, it can be consumed raw and in a salad: a balsamic vinegar based condiment will enhance all its sweet flavor, while the addition of a few drops of lemon will create a pleasant sweet and sour contrast, capable of satisfying the most demanding palates.
A diet that includes the intake of purple cauliflower is particularly suitable for those at risk of degenerative diseases (like tumors), Alzheimer or complications due to high blood pressure. The numerous nutritional contributions also make this vegetable suitable to be taken by individuals of all ages.
Purple cauliflower, such as broccoli and rocket, belongs to the family of “cruciferous”, arboreal species characterized by flowers with four petals and particularly spread in the mediterranean basin countries.
The steamed cooking method in a little water, allows all the beneficial properties of this food to be preserved unaltered. On the contrary, cooking in a lot of water favors the dispersions of nutritional properties of the cauliflower.
The purple color does not derive from genetic mutations, but from a selection done by man in a natural way.
The purple variant is particularly spread in the south of Italy and in South-Africa. In the world there are other variants that chromatically tend to red, pink and blue: even these color tones are due the presence of anthocyanin that, on the contrary, are much less common in the white cauliflower species that is widely spread in italy especially in the northern regions.
The purple cauliflower keeps being considered a niche agri-food product, despite the spread of organic “crops” and “culture” have legitimised it in the fruit and vegetable market.