Tasty Tuesdays – Roasted Cauliflower

Roasted vegetables are always delicious, easy to prepare and excellent as a side dish.  This recipe only takes a couple of minutes to whip up and the cauliflower can roast while you make the rest of the meal.

Ingredients

  • 1 head of cauliflower
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • ¼ tsp garam masala
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/8 tsp pepper
  • 1 sweet white onion
  • Salt

Directions

  • Preheat the oven to 425°.
  • Using a mortar and pestle combine the coriander seeds, cumin, garam masala, nutmeg, cayenne pepper and freshly ground black pepper.
  • In a mixing bowl, add the spice mix to the olive oil.
  • Cut cauliflower into bite-sized pieces and chop the onion.
  • Add the vegetables to the mixing bowl and stir until everything is thoroughly coated.
  • Spread onto a baking sheet.
  • Bake for 20 minutes, then stir and continue cooking for 10 minutes more.
  • Salt to taste.

Interesting Facts

It’s unusual to hear people include cauliflower in a conversation about highly nutritious vegetables.  In actuality, this cruciferous vegetable, which is a relative to Brussels sprouts and broccoli, is loaded with nutrients (Branca, 2008).  Cauliflower contains notable amounts of calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc and vitamins B, C and K.  Surprisingly, 100 g of raw cauliflower contains nearly the same amount of vitamin C as an equivalent amount of orange (USDA, 2012).   Furthermore, this vegetable is low in fat, high in dietary fiber and has trace amounts of healthy fatty acids.  All of these factors deem cauliflower to be an excellent choice for weight loss or maintenance, and optimum digestion.  Cauliflower is also known to contain glucosinolates which are highly studied for their possible antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties (Cabello-Hurtado et al., 2012).  These important properties decrease the chances of prevalent health problems such as cardiovascular disease and cancer.  Additionally, these organic compounds improve digestion and decrease the risk of gastrointestinal ailments caused by inflammation (Abul-Fadl, 2012).  The stomach and intestines contain naturally occurring bacteria; some are beneficial while others are not.  The glucosinolates in cauliflower are broken down into compounds known as isothiocyanate, which directly assist in elimination of bad bacteria from the gastric system (Keenan et al., 2010).  So next time you are discussing healthy foods and the importance of ingesting all colours of fruits and vegetables, consider telling people about this white plant.  After all, cauliflower is only white in colour because of the large green leaves that protect the undeveloped flowering buds from sunlight which inhibit the development of chlorophyll (Murray et al., 2005).

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