This peculiar-looking vegetable is actually part of the cabbage family. Romanesque also goes by the name Romanesco broccoli, or Romanesque cabbage, but it doesn't look like any cabbage you've ever seen. The bright, florescent lime-green heads have tightly-pointed florets, and look like something from the dinosaur age.
Romanesque, which hails from Italy, has a crunchy, nutty taste, much different than cauliflower. Prepare Romanesque as you would cauliflower or broccoli. It is surprisingly sweet and mild.
A cup of Romanesque has about 25 calories and is a good source of potassium. It has vitamin A and slightly more vitamin C than white cauliflower.
How to Select: Look for tight heads that are heavy for their size, and a vibrant green color. Avoid ones with brown spots or small heads. Check the stem to make sure it's creamy white.
How to Store: Keep in the refrigerator for two to three days. After that it starts going soft and slightly browns.
Roasted Romanesque Cauliflower
One 2 1/2 pound Romanesque cauliflower, core removed and cauliflower broken up into florets
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt
Several grinds black pepper
Preheat the oven to 425°F.
Place all ingredients in bowl mixing bowl. Toss and mix the Romanesque until evenly coated with seasoning and oil. Arrange florets in an even layer on a baking sheet.
Roast for 20 minutes, or until the Romanesque is tender. Finish with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, if desired.