Romanesco is descending as normal cauliflower from brassica archetypes in middle Asia. Cauliflower has been cultivated in Europe since centuries and has been mentioned as early as in the 6th century. Romanesco cauliflower is a variant of normal cauliflower, which has been developed in the area of Rome.
Romanesco is surprisingly sweet and mild when cooked tender, more like its close cousin the cauliflower but with a denser texture that holds up well to different cooking methods.
How to prepare
Romanesco cauliflower can be eaten raw or cooked and used in the same way as white cauliflower try serving a mixture of the 2 for a change.
Trim the outer green leaves from the cauliflower (these can be cooked like cabbage or used in soup) and divide the head into large florets. Wash thoroughly before using.
Steam or boil the florets in 3 to 5cm of water for 5 to 10 minutes or until just tender, add 1 tsp of lemon juice to the water to enhance the white colour. Drain well before serving and season with black pepper.
Buyer's and storage guide
Keep the romanesco in the fridge for up to 1 week.
- steamed or boiled with a squeeze of fresh lemon and a generous splash of olive oil
- romanesco pairs perfectly with pasta
- with a little butter and crispy shallots