Now hear this, foodies. There is no way cauliflower is ever going to taste like mashed potatoes, rice or pizza crust, in my humble opinion.
This albino crucifer has moved into the top spot as the “it” food for 2016. “It’s the new kale of 2015,” food magazines declare. People are making all kinds of sacrilegious entrees with this once-overlooked vegetable. They’re cooking up cauliflower popcorn, rice, couscous, bread, hash, “buffalo” bites and lasagna.
“Cauliflower is a blank canvas that takes on any flavor or personality,” celebrity chef Rachael Ray gushed in a recent interview with a New York newspaper. She roasted cauliflower and served it with garlic ricotta cream sauce on Thanksgiving.
Oh, sure, there are the health benefits — it’s high in dietary fiber, low-carb, chock full of vitamin C and is low in calories. Cauliflower is being lauded as a superfood because it contains detoxifying vitamins B and K, Omega-3s and manganese.
Please don’t tell my husband about this cauliflower craze. I’m still recovering from “The Year of the Kale.” He grew so much kale — beautiful, award-winning kale — our freezer is still stuffed with it. Heretofore his cauliflower production has been modest, but I can see the handwriting on the wall, and it’s dripping with cauliflower puree.
The guy loves a good garden trend. Heirloom tomatoes, check. Haricots Verts (fancy French green beans), check. You get the idea.
There was one cauliflower recipe I came across that is cause for concern: cauliflower tortillas. If one can successfully make tortillas out of this pasty white veggie, could one also make lefse (some call them Norwegian tortillas) with cauliflower? Absolutely not, I’m declaring right here and now. My mind won’t even go there.
I’m not even that big of a fan of cauliflower, so I sure wouldn’t sully my lefse griddle with the likes of this over-rated vegetable. Potatoes will do just fine for my lefse. Generations of Norwegians have relied on good ol’ spuds to make this Scandinavian pastry, so if it ain’t broke I’m not going to fix it, not with cauliflower anyway.
My lefse production is in full swing right now because I have slowly built an underground lefse ministry, if you will. If I come across someone who is desperate for a lefse fix — and there are many in these parts — I discreetly make sure they get some for the holidays. I see the hunger in their eyes, the shaky hands needing a load of carbs. Yep, they’re jonesing for some grilled dough. I know a lefse addict when I see one. When they hear that I “roll my own” there’s no stopping them.
Problem is, there is such a pent-up demand for lefse in the Flathead with the hordes of former Minnesotans that have relocated here, that I may not have time to get to everyone.
So know if you receive a special care package, you are truly in my inner circle. And there won’t be a hint of cauliflower anywhere.
Features editor Lynnette Hintze may be reached at 758-4421 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.