For many people cauliflower has only one culinary connotation… cauliflower cheese. Although when done well this classic is indeed a British favourite…here are a few more ideas for something a little more creative.

Homemade piccalilli

Now is the time to get busy making your own piccalilli. Make enough to see you through the winter or put into pretty jars and give away as thoughtful Christmas presents. There are many variations of recipes out there but Delia’s is a tried and tested classic:

http://www.deliaonline.com/recipes/type-of-dish/preserve/spiced-mustard-pickle-piccalilli.html

Cauliflower and cheddar soup

  • Great for a slightly different winter warmer. Reproduce the classic cauliflower cheese in soup form with this easy recipe (serves 4):
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks
  • 1 medium head cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 1 tsp mild curry power
  • pinch saffron strands
  • 300ml hot chicken or vegetable stock
  • 300ml milk
  • 100g grated cheddar cheese

Method

Heat half the oil in a large saucepan and add onions and celery. Stir over a medium heat for 3-4 minutes until the vegetables are beginning to soften.

Add the remaining oil, cauliflower florets, curry power and saffron, and season with salt and pepper. Stir well and cook for a couple of minutes. Cover the pan.

After a few minutes when the vegetables are softened, add the stock. Bring to a simmer and then add the milk, adding more water if necessary to cover the vegetables. Return to a simmer and cook until the cauliflower is very soft.

Use a hand-held stick blender to liquidize the soup. Return the soup to pan and place over a low heat. Bring to a gentle simmer then slowly stir in the cheese to melt. Loosen the consistency with a little hot water if the soup is too thick. Taste and adjust seasoning.

Spiced cauliflower

Cauliflower works brilliantly with Indian spices, either add to a meat curry or use alone to create a stunning vegetable side dish. Try toasting ½ tsp quantities of fenugreek, coriander seeds and cumin seeds, grinding and then adding to cauliflower cooked gently with turmeric, onions, garlic, chilli and a little chicken stock- deliciously different.

Creative ideas for cauliflower

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We are a family-run farm set in the heart of the Chiltern Hills, Buckinghamshire.

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Peterley