Cauliflower is one of several vegetables in the species Brassica oleracea in the genus Brassica. It is an annual plant that reproduces by seed. Typically, only the head is eaten – the edible white flesh sometimes called "curd".
Cauliflower is one of the many cabbage related cole crops that revel in cool weather. Mark Twain called it "A cabbage with a college education.", but we don't think it's just cabbage with airs. Cauliflower has a very distinct nuttiness, closer to broccoli in flavor. The main edible part of both cauliflower and broccoli is the flower bud, making them both edible flowers. Cauliflower is not the easiest vegetable to grow, because it is very sensitive to temperature changes, however with a little TLC, it can be a very rewarding vegetable for your garden. The white varieties need to be blanched, by covering the head with its leaves. The purple varieties get their color from anthocyanin, an antioxidant. Unfortunately, both the color and the benefits disappear with cooking. And a happy accident leads to the orange cauliflowers, which have a higher percentage of beta-carotene.