Broccoli vs cauliflower

A broccoli, a cauliflower, and…

One broccoli (Early Dividend), one cauliflower (Early Dawn), but what’s that Violet Queen in the middle? The EDs are standbys, the VQ is new. It looks like broccoli, cooks like broccoli, tastes like broccoli, but it’s in the seed catalog as a purple cauliflower?! The VQ were transplanted really late, and I didn’t actually expect to see a harvest from them. But they showed up recently, and a couple of days ago, Bert, who buys lots of veggies here, saw them and decided to try a couple. “They’re broccoli,” he said. “Um, I believe they’re…cauliflower,” I said, while for the first time looking closely at ‘em. “Don’t argue with him, Bert, Mike knows what he’s talking about,” said Helen, his wife. Last night, we steamed some for dinner. BROCCOLI. Today, I harvested samples for a formal close look, but really, there’s broccoli and there’s cauliflower, it’s not hard. Broccoli. Next, a call to the seed house, where extremely knowledgeable head man Bill assures me that it is…CAULIFLOWER. It beads up more than some varieties, he says. So, I’m confused. It may not sound like a big deal, and it’s not at this time of year, but it does point up yet another aspect of market gardening: knowing what you grow. LOTS of talking about veggies goes on every market day, and I NEVER say things just for the sake of it. I name varieties, explain when I’m very familiar with a particular veggie, or when it’s new to me…honest conversation, although it’s “sales talk” as well. And people trust you to…know stuff. Anyhow, I just looked up Violet Queen online, and it’s indeed, apparently, cauliflower. I’d swear it’s broccoli, and I’m pretty positive that you would, too! Maybe I’ll grow more next year, for when I feel like sounding like a lunatic! :)

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17 Responses to “Broccoli vs cauliflower”

  1. Robin says:

    I grew this purple broccoflower this year. I bought cauliflower. I grew broccoli. The only thing that resembled cauliflower was the total lack of side shoots. This tastes good but not good enough to grow next year.

  2. Ferdzy says:

    It’s certainly very pretty!

  3. Whether its Broccoli or Cauliflower, I like the looks of it. Your picture is great! I will look for Violet Queen to grow next year. My kids would love it!

    Thanks for sharing such an odd but interesting variety.

  4. Sarah says:

    I just bought one yesterday and I cooked it for tonight’s dinner. My boy likes the colour but we would like to know how the purple colour comes from?

  5. Mike (tfb) says:

    Sarah, veggie colors come from pigments. It’s all genetics, like different colors of hair or eyes or skin or whatever.

    Information about veggie colors is interesting! I don’t keep much track of veggie nutritional value, though there’s a lot of info on it, because I don’t feel it’s all that useful for me to say stuff like, “oh, eat kale ’cause it’s high in this or that, which is good for this or that.” What do I really know?! But it’s still cool how the different pigments seem to have different nutritional and health properties, so it’s good to eat veggies by colors, a really colorful plate is better…

    You can try searching in Google or Yahoo! for something like “vegetable color nutrition”. Here are a couple of interesting links: Colour is the key and Benefits of a Variety of Fruits and Vegetables.

  6. eileen says:

    how do you keep your cauliflower and kale free of cabbage worm? ours are decimated by cabbage worm.

    • neal says:

      This is a herb.
      Nasturtium repels aphids, asparagus beetle, cabbage looper,
      Colorado potato beetle, cucumber beetle, flea beetle, imported cabbage worm, Japanese beetle, squash bug and the white-flies

    • Dave Moenter says:

      I have been growing cauliflower for years. Use BT It is a natural product and is considered organic not a poison Spray plants about every 10 days.

  7. Mike (tfb) says:

    eilenn: Thankfully, I haven’t been visited by cabbage worm, so I don’t have an answer. Flea beetles are the scourge of the brassicas here, I absolutely have to use floating row cover over seedling transplants or the  FBs would eat them to the stem.

  8. Cassie says:

    I had to do a project on cauliflower, I learned a lot of good information about it.
    These are the questions to answer to get awesome info.
    The nutritional value,Preparation,What part do we eat,History,Grown and harvested, And recipes. The best place to go is fruitsandveggiesmatter.gov.
    Then click on fruit and veggie of the month scroll down and click on cauliflower and there is all the info you need.

  9. Kris says:

    It makes for a stunning photo, whatever you want to call it!

  10. EtienneG says:

    Mike, don’t sweat it: they’re all brassica oleracea …  :D

  11. bayu says:

    Can I buy seeds from your
    please send me email
    bayu.tunggul@yahoo.co.id
    indonesia

  12. bayu says:

    please give some cauliflower seeds for free
    please ….
    I am in Indonesia
    I let you know via email

  13. Georgina says:

    BT bacillus thuringiensis, is what i use for white cabbage butterfly larva same as cabbage worm ??? also very very effective and beautiful is Phacelia and buck wheat as and intergarted pest management system a row along side my brassicas attracted hover flys that parasited all the bests i had for a whole season wide the breadding stock out completley. beetles are what got your pak choi as well i read, hmm mine as well similar signs will try covers but so expensive.

    Oh and i’ve seen a yellow one and a green and the romanesco is so gorgeous

  14. Allen says:

    That is a great picture!

  15. veronika says:

    woooo…..i like it,

  16. Broccoli says:

    Broccoli is high in vitamin C, as well as dietary fiber; it also contains multiple nutrients with potent anti-cancer properties, such as diindolylmethane and small amounts of selenium. A single serving provides more than 30 mg of vitamin C and a half-cup provides 52 mg of vitamin C.The 3,3′-Diindolylmethane found in broccoli is a potent modulator of the innate immune response system with anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-cancer activity.Broccoli also contains the compound glucoraphanin, which can be processed into an anti-cancer compound sulforaphane, though the benefits of broccoli are greatly reduced if the vegetable is boiled.Broccoli is also an excellent source of indole-3-carbinol, a chemical which boosts DNA repair in cells and appears to block the growth of cancer cells.

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