I’m fascinated by unusual, heritage varieties of vegetables, like purple carrots and orange tomatoes. Recently some of my favourite supermarkets have been carrying unusual varieties of cauliflower. They have the normal white ones, plus the orange, green and purple ones that appear from time to time.
But the last few times I have been shopping they have also had Romanesco cauliflower. This bizarre, beautiful veggie looks like a strange, but not unappealing, combination of a healthy food and a Buddhist temple. Or, if your mind turns more to literature, it might resemble the result if Dr. Seuss had designed your vegetable garden. It is like an edible fractal, with each floret being a miniature of the whole head.
It tastes very similar to regular white cauliflower, with a firmer texture, and I’ve been using it freely as a substitute for that, or broccoli.