Vince’s Market’s Vegetable Highlight: The Cauliflower

health benefits of cauliflower

We asked you for feedback and we got it! One of the big blog requests is for us to identify seasonal fruits and vegetables and give some tips on how to select, how to store, how to prepare and a great recipe for cooking. So here we go! Here is Vince’s Market’s vegetable highlight of the week – the Cauliflower… everything you need to know. Cauliflower will be a big food trend item for 2015!

Cauliflower is at its best in fall and winter and into early spring. Sunshine and heat bring out bitter flavours in the undeveloped flower buds that make up the tightly packed florets in a head of cauliflower, whereas chill and frost bring out its sweeter side. Cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable like broccoli, kale, and cabbage. In Ontario, the crop comes into season at the end of August and can last into Thanksgiving. Cauliflower contains a wealth of fiber and choline, along with powerful phytochemical compounds indole-3-carbinol and isothiocyanates. These health promoting nutrients make incorporating cauliflower into your daily diet a smart strategy to protect against heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and rheumatoid arthritis.

Selecting Fresh Cauliflower

Cauliflower is in season during the fall, although it is available throughout most of the winter. Look for firm, tight heads without bruises or brown spots, with evenly coloured ivory or cream florets. A few varieties of cauliflower have a green or purple tinge, which is natural and does not change the taste. If any leaves remain, they should be green and fresh looking. Heads that are surrounded by many thick green leaves are better protected and will be fresher. As its size is not related to its quality, choose one that best suits your needs. Avoid cauliflower with loosely packed or spreading florets. It is acceptable if a few green shoots are showing among the florets, or if the florets look a little grainy or bristly.

Storing Cauliflower

Store cauliflower in a loose, perforated plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. If you do not use the entire head, plan to eat the remaining florets within a day. Or, you may freeze them, first blanching them in lightly salted water for about 3 minutes, draining, and then putting them in rigid containers or plastic bags in the freezer for up to 1 year. Once cooked, cauliflower keeps for only 1 or 2 days in the refrigerator.

Preparing Cauliflower

Remove any leaves from the stem end of the head, separate the head into florets and rinse under cold running water. Trim off any brown spots. Cauliflower can be cooked whole as well and the florets separated after cooking. Steam or boil cauliflower until tender and toss with a little butter or lemon juice, or combine with other vegetables, before serving.

Tip:  Adding a few drops of lemon juice or a little milk to the cooking water helps cauliflower retain its creamy white color.

As with cabbage, unfortunately there is no way to prevent an odour from emanating from the cauliflower during cooking. Cut cauliflower into small florets, cook them quickly, and turn on exhaust fans and open windows to disperse any unwanted smells.

Did you know the stem and leaves of cauliflower are edible too? They are especially good for adding to soup stocks.

Other Uses for Cauliflower

There has been significant traction in recent months with cauliflower being utilized as a substitute in diets requiring low gluten or no gluten at all. The vegetable has a natural ability to adopt whatever flavours are supported in the dish. Common substitutions are as follows:

  • Cauliflower based pizza crust
  • Potatoes – in any application from shepherd’s pie to straight mashed to breakfast hash browns
  • With couscous
  • As breading or crumbs on fried foods
  • In quiche
  • Sushi

We have also provided below a great pasta recipe using cauliflower in our weekly email news releae. We have tested the recipe and it checks out for taste and authenticity to Italian flavours.

In reality, this blog is your blog as we write it to be read. We hope you get some valuable information and benefit from reading it each week.

We welcome your feedback! This blog is your blog as we write it to be read. We hope you get some valuable information and benefit from reading it each week. Let us know what you think! You can leave a comment right here on the site or head on over and join in the conversation on Facebook (remember to ‘Like’ the page) and Twitter – (don’t forget to follow us there too).

If you haven’t already signed up to receive our weekly news delivered right to your inbox (including the blog, signup for our Coterie Program, and our recipe of the week), you will find the signup by clicking here.

Till next time,


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Happy New Year copy 2015 is here! As a blog subscriber, we want to take this opportunity to thank you for following Vince’s Market and keeping up to date with us. We feel so fortunate to have a loyal and engaged customer group who keep us informed of how we are doing. This constant feedback is so important as an independent grocer and local business to make sure we continue to be relevant to you! With this in mind, we are currently asking you to help us with our weekly Blog topics for 2015! We are asking you – what questions have you always wanted your grocer to answer? What topics are important to you in 2015? What insights into our business would you like to know? Go to our Facebook page and leave us a comment. You will be entered to win a $50 Vince’s Market gift card.

Trends have become so important to how food is viewed and purchased. So what will happen with food in 2015? There is a lot of stuff out there that you can read – Supermarket Guru, Phil Lempert, is a trusted source and says “The top food trends for 2015 indicate people’s palates are continuing to evolve and they are gravitating toward streamlined grocery shopping experiences that are convenient for their lifestyles. In 2015, look for brands and merchants to advance their product offerings and shopping amenities to meet these demands.
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Made to Order Holiday Party Platters and Fruit Baskets

Vince's Market Holiday Platters and Fruit Baskets Christmas is fast approaching and we are excited and ready for a busy and festive holiday season. We have received a number of your holiday favourites from festive fruitcakes and panettone to eggnog and apple cider. We have sourced some local traditional products like Stickling’s Bakery Stollen. Whatever food item it is you are looking for, try Vince’s Market! And, did you know Vince’s Market offers made to order party platters and fruit baskets?

For years, Vince’s has been helping families lesson their preparation load by creating custom party platters that suit their family’s tastes. Using only the very best ingredients picked fresh from our store, we have a talented group of staff that prepare and create exactly what you are looking for. Let us save you time and effort by selecting a Vince’s Market party platter for your holiday party.

Attending a family gathering or celebration? Our made to order fruit and gift baskets are always well received! Made with care and attention to detail, our fruit only baskets start at $30 and can be customized to the tastes of the recipient. Want to include something special? we would be happy to include an item for you – just coordinate with the team member taking your order. Over the years we have been able to custom-make baskets for a varieties of purposes – from corporate gifts to something just right for grandma and grandpa. We have a vast variety of products to ensure everyone gets a little bit of what they love!

Last but not least – be sure to enter the Vince’s Market 12 Days of Giveaways! For more detalls on the contest, please click here. Then, ‘Like’ our video on Facebook or enter via ballot in store. You can enter until the end of business on Sunday, November 30th. We will then be combining entries and drawing winners starting Monday December 1st! Daily winners will be announced at 8pm via Facebook! Good luck!

We look forward to seeing you in the stores. Send us your feedback too! You can leave your comment right here on the site or join in the conversation on Facebook (don’t forget to ‘Like’ the page) and Twitter! If you haven’t already signed up to receive our weekly news delivered right to your inbox (including the blog, signup for our Coterie Program, staff bios and our recipe of the week), you will find the signup by clicking here.

Seasons Greetings and Happy Holidays from Vince’s Market!


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