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Wednesday, February 1, 2012

broccoli and cauliflower salad

There are those out there who declare that raw is the only way to eat vegetables, and that cooking anything means breaking it down and losing some of its nutritious value. I can't say I know much about that. I imagine it has a decent dose of validity to it, but I also know that breaking vegetables down might not necessarily be the worst thing possible. I also know that there are degrees of truth, and that the method and length of cooking makes a big difference.

What is important is that you eat your veggies. If you cooking them is what will make them appeal to you, by all means cook 'em up and enjoy them. If eating them raw seems better, eat them raw. Just make sure you are getting a good variety and a great amount of fruits and vegetables in your diet.

For myself, I have a pretty good balance. Obviously things like potatoes need to be cooked, most fruits are eaten raw, and plenty of other things are good both ways. Like broccoli. A few weeks ago I did a series of ten recipes for cooking broccoli. Today, though, let's keep the stove turned off and the oven cool.

This salad has become an old standby at my house. It keeps well in the fridge for a couple of days, so I can make a big batch and enjoy it for dinner, as well as the next couple of lunches. It is very easy to throw together, and has a great sweet and tart flavor. As soon as I saw that there was both broccoli and cauliflower in my Abundant Harvest box this week, I knew that this was going to be on the menu.

I have had an abundance of rutabagas lately, and I have been throwing one into just about everything I cook, including this salad. If you have one, feel free to throw it in. If not, don't even bat an eye. It's not intended to be there, and it won't be missed.

Broccoli and cauliflower salad
This salad is best if it can be made ahead and allowed to chill for a few hours. Try to plan ahead! (This also makes it great for dinner on a busy weeknight).

1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
1 head broccoli, cut into florets
1 red onion, diced
1 small-medium rutabaga, diced (optional)
1/3 cup raisins
1/4 cup roasted salted sunflower seeds

1/3 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/4 cup sugar

Chop all the veggies and toss together in a large bowl. In a small bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients. Toss the salad with the dressing until evenly coated.