I tried a new vegetable (for me) for the St. Patrick’s Day posting. It is called Romanesco and is a member of the Brassica family, similar to both broccoli and cauliflower. Here is what www.myrecipes.com has to say: (Direct Quote)
“Romanesco, most likely the least familiar name of the bunch, and not to be confused with romesco, is an edible bud that is also commonly referred to as Romanesco Cauliflower or Romanesco Broccoli, depending on where you are. Confusing, right? It’s coloration falls somewhere in the middle of broccoli and cauliflower, but what truly sets it apart from the others is it’s unmistakable texture. It’s spiky yet symmetrical style looks like an unsolved math puzzle, and offers a super textural, crunchy experience. Similar to broccoli, Romanesco is great for anything from crudites, to a simple steamed dish, or even roasted on a sheet pan. Expect a flavor closer to broccoli, with a slightly earthier profile.”
I looked up its nutritional profile and this unusual looking vegetable has almost 90 grams of Vitamin C per cup and is high in potassium and magnesium but low in sodium with only 39 calories per saving. But I think a side attraction is the unusual color green, which can be combined with other colorful vegetables such as carrots or sweet potatoes.
I decided the best way to start was to steam the entire head of Romanesco and then in the future play around with breaking it apart and maybe combining it with one of the colorful cauliflowers and roast it in the oven. The idea of placing the whole Romanesco on a platter appealed to me.
So, instead of a list of ingredients and detailed directions, here is what I did:
I removed the green leaves fro the bottom of the plant and sliced off about 1/2 inch from the base, which looks a lot like a cauliflower base. Then I placed it in my steamer and steamed it until I could pierce it with a fork, under 20 minutes (depending on the size.) I lifted it carefully onto a platter, sprayed on some avocado oil and topped it with fresh dill. It easily broke apart with a fork and I shared it with my daughter and daughter-in-law.
In the future I might try broiling it or adding some pieces to my Indian stew (kitchari). The flavor was very reminiscent of cauliflower, but not exactly, like a kissin’ cousin!