Cauliflower Nutrition, Selection, Storage and Availability An excellent source of Vitamins B, C and E, cauliflower also contains high amounts of folate and Vitamin B6. As a cruciferous vegetable, cauliflower also contains phytochemicals called isothiocyanates, which are antioxidants that can detoxify cancer-causing agents in the body when eaten. When purchasing cauliflower, look for firm, compact heads about 6 inches in diameter. Avoid cauliflower that has soft heads or brown spots. Refrigerate cauliflower immediately after purchase. Store in the refrigerator, wrapped in a damp cloth or plastic bag, and cauliflower will keep for up to one week. If stored too long, cauliflower develops a strong flavor and odor. Cauliflower can be stored long-term with proper preparation. Fresh cauliflower is available in Wisconsin in August through September.
Cauliflower Extras Cauliflower evolved from sprouting broccoli and is known as a cruciferous vegetable. Some varieties include the traditional white variety, broccoflower and purple cauliflower (the latter turns green when cooked). It is a cool-season vegetable and is difficult to grow. Cauliflower was first introduced to North America in the 1600’s, but probably originated in Asia. Prior to the 1600’s, cauliflower was found almost exclusively in Italy before spreading to France and the rest of Europe.
Information from the Wisconsin Fresh Market Vegetable Growers Association, the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade & Consumer Protection and the University of Wisconsin-Extension.