Romanesco. When I recently discovered this amazing vegetable at one of my favorite health food stores, I was in awe. I couldn’t stop staring at it.
The color is a beautiful, happy shade of green. But what caught my eye even more was it’s intriguing spiral florets. Their pointy nature remind me of small skinny turrets on the corner of a castle or house with Victorian architecture.
When I took my romanesco home, the first thing I did was set it on the granite counter top take a picture of it. As if to honoring the beautiful creation or using it as a centerpiece, I left it on the kitchen countertop for several hours. As soon as my daughter saw it, she too was intrigued by its unique beauty (she loves castles….).
Even though I was curious to see how it would taste, I hated to cut it! Realizing it would eventually die anyway helped me to more willingly pierce it with my knife.
The flavor was as much of a surprise as the look. Romanesco is a cross between cauliflower and broccoli. Both broccoli and cauliflower have a distinct, pungent taste and somewhat offending sulfur, rotten egg smell. Not Romanesco. Romanesco has a more mild, delicate, almost sweet flavor and I didn’t notice that sulfur like smell after it was chopped.
Once you get over having to cut this gorgeous green beauty, chop it the same way you would florets of broccoli or cauliflower. Then roast it with some oil, garlic, salt and pepper. It’s also easy and delicious sautéed or steamed.
However you decide to cook it, just be careful not to over do it. Often people don’t like broccoli because it’s overcooked, mushy and has lost it’s true flavor.
Romanesco is not cheap, Lucky for me it was on sale that day because I just had to have it! Nevertheless, a splurge on something new to keep things interesting and creative in the kitchen is always worth the investment.
Here’s an idea….To keep things lively in your kitchen, why not try some romanesco or another new vegetable this week and let me know what you think. Sound good?
1 head romanesco
2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
1 teaspoon Himalayan sea salt
5 whole garlic cloves
1/4 teaspoon red chilli pepper flakes
Cut romanesco into florets and place in a baking dish. Toss with remaining ingredients leaving garlic cloves whole with skin on. Roast for 30 minutes or until tender and slightly crispy.