Tuesday, February 16, 2010

310 Days

Once upon a time,  In the spring of 2009 a girl made a plan.

It was a grand plan and she sketched it out carefully.

She carefully recorded the varities of vegetables, rotations, days to germination, plant spacing, and days to readiness off of each seed packet since she knew her feeble mind could never remember such details.  

She got a little dirt on the plans on their excursions to plant but no matter.

It was the information that was important.

A girl can never have too much information,  dirt smudges or no.

Spring turned into summer and most of the plants behaved just as they should.

Just as the plan showed they would.

And summer turmed into fall and most of the spring plants were finished and were replaced with new seeds and a new plan.

Late in the fall the girl's husband wondered aloud about a particular plant that did not seem to be following the same schedule.

It just grew and grew.

Lots and lots of leaves but nothing else.

"Oh well"  said the girl  "I don't remember what that is and we don't need that spot anyway. Let's just leave it and if it still hasn't done anything by the next spring we'll pull it out then"

And so it went.

And then one day in early February the girl saw something.

Something purple was showing in the center of the mounds of leaves.

So she got out her plan....her record of important information.
"OK! It's Purple Cape Cauliflower! But it sure is huge and why in the world did it take so long?" 

You see the girl had forgotten to write down the days to maturity for this plant. Nada. Zilch.

And it happened that she had used the end of the seed packet so she didn't have that either.

And when she looked it up in the seed catalog it wasn't listed in the latest edition.

You see the normal cauliflower did just what it was supposed to do and caused no angst at all.

But neither did it peak the girl's curiosity.

But this:

This amazing thing went on for 310 days!

About 10 months!

Finally with the failure of her informational system, the curious girl looked online to see what it was really supposed to be.

And she discover that it should have been 240 days to maturity... off by a mere two months.

But she was very glad indeed to see this monstrous cauliflower.

And so she took some pictures to show her friends.

And she put a bucket next to it to show scale so her friends would be able to tell how large it was.

And because she thought the bucket was amusing as she pondered what sort of parent would not notice their child's feet sticking out of a bright yellow bucket.
She finally harvested the huge cauliflower and the abudance of inner leaves.
And remaining outer tough or eaten leaves went into the compost pile.

She decided that a roasted cauliflower and leek soup would be just the thing and that it would go great with the extra loaf of whole wheat herb and asiago bread that she had made two days before.
She took some more pictures so that her friends could see how the size compared to a cup measure.

And how it was light colored underneath.

The girl had a reputation for choosing vegetables to grow for no other reason that visual coolness.

She chopped the cauliflower and tossed it along with some garlic cloves and leeks in a little olive oil and oven roasted them  for about 30-40 minutes. After which she pureed the stalkier parts and garlic with some chicken broth and left most of the florets whole....cause she was that kinda girl.
Then she added some sauteed shallots and chopped carrots, the florets, and a basic roux to thicken the soup.
While that was all going on she made one of her stranger inventions.

You see when the "normal" cauliflower and brocolli had started to be ready for harvest the girl and her husband had developed a liking for roasting them. 

And since the girl was sometimes a little lazy she didn't always take off the leaves closest to the head.

She just tossed them in the olive oil and salt and peppered them with the rest.

And the two started to fight over the little leaves.

She doesn't really know if she invented this by accident or if there is a place in the world that they eat these all the time.

She thinks it would have to be a place where they grow their own food cause you never see leaves like these in the stores.

And like I said she is sometimes lazy and doesn't take time to Google these things to find out if she invented them.

What she does know though, is that if you roast them just like your other vegies...

except not quite as long....they can be sensitive...
they turn out just like a short of crunchy chip thing.

And she will have wrestle her husband for them.




  1. MMMMMMM,...this soup looks georgous & those greeny home grown leaves look so attractive, don't they???

    I also love purple cauliflower!! Yeah!!


  2. Thanks for stopping by Sophie! :)

  3. Love it! Thank you for sharing. I can't wait to try it with all of my giant broccoli leaves, kale and chard from the CSA...among other things :)