- Cauliflower origin is from Cyprus. At the beginning, cauliflower was even called Cyprus colewart. The vegetable was very popular in Ancient Greece and Rome. From that countries it was widen to the other European countries, especially to France. It became popular in 16th century.
- Cauliflower is a vegetables in the species of cabbage (Brassica). It’s weight is from 25 dag to 2 kg. Stalk is strongly shortened and cylindrical. During growth, it produces head a compact concentration of shortened, fleshy flower shoots. The head can be white, cream, green. Leaves grow from the bottom of the stem and partially cover the giant inflorescence (head). Sometimes they overwhelm it. Flowers develop on side shoots growing on the periphery of a fleshy heas, similar to other brassicas, light yellow.
- The biggest world producers are China and India. In Europe significant producers are Spain, Itlay, France and Poland. It also cultivated in USA and Maxico.
- There are more than 80 varieties of cauliflower but for production purposes dominates white cauliflower. In the Mediterranean countries, green and purple cauliflower is grown, and the orange cauliflower origin Canada.
- Cauliflower is cultivated in two methods – in the field or undercover in greenhouses. Greenhouse cultivating is more efficient, gives higher production however is more expensive.
- Cauliflower might be harvested manually or mechanically. Mechanical harvesting dominates especially on the big farms.
- Cauliflower is used for culinary purposes as a fresh vegetable. It can be eaten in the form of raw, boiled, blanched, roasted, grilled and fried. Might be added to various types of salads. Cauliflower is great for a variety of meat dishes. It is also processed to frozen cauliflowers. Preserving or marinating is very rare, mostly for own use, not for industry scale.
- Cauliflower is a very valuable vegetable due to its chemical composition, as well as taste and diet. It contains, among others: sodium, potassium, magnesium, calcium, manganese, iron, copper, zinc, phosphorus, fluorine, chlorine, iodine, carotenes, vitamins: K, B1, B2, B6, C.
- Cauliflower is a vegetable in the species "Brassica oleracea" in the genus "Brassica", from familly "Brassicaceae"
- Scientific name is Brassica oleracea L. var.botrytis L
070410 Cauliflowers and headed broccoli, fresh or chilled
071080 Vegetables (excluding potatoes, leguminous vegetables, spinach, New Zealand spinach, garden spinach and sweetcorn), uncooked or cooked by steaming or boiling in water, frozen
Most popular cauliflower varieties:
Aalsmeer - early vigorous variety with excellent curds that are well protected. Creamy white heads of good depth and weight. Frost hardy.
Autumn Giant - large solid white heads well protected from the weather.
Aviron F1 - superb deep large curds with strong leaf growth for light frost protection. Ideal for poorer soils and low nitrogen cultivation..
Barcelona F1 - a very early variety of cauliflower that is ideally suited to an October sowing, this variety produces white curds of exceptional quality and makes for an ideal replacement for Alpha 7 Jubro.
Belot F1 - produces high quality heads fro cutting October to December. Has excellent deep clean white curds.
Candid Charm F1 - benefits from large pure white heads covered by dark green leaves. It is very fast to maturity where it will produce brilliant yields of high quality cauliflower to eat.
Clapton F1 - a cauliflower with good quality white curds carried high off the ground so is kept very clean.
Goodman F1 - early variety with a vigorous growing habit with well protected, solid, white curds. Matures approximately 80-90 days after transplanting. Organic seed.
Graffiti F1 - deepest purple cauliflower curds, perfect for adding colour to any summer or autumn dish, delicious and highly nutritious. Matures within 75-80 days with a good head weight.
Green Trevi F1 - green heads of medium size and excellent taste. Sow June for October cutting.
Igloo - an early variety with good, clean, white heads. Can be used as mini-vegetable when grown close together, or at wider spacing for larger heads.
Lisbonia F1 - a great replacement for Wallaby, very upright foliage and narrow base. Performs best during the September harvest period.
Maystar (EWK) - solid curds of pure white, ideal for floret freezing as well as usual cooking.
Medallion F1 - sow May or June for cropping late February to early March. Very uniform with deep, round and heavy curds but not suitable for Northern areas
Romanesco - highly attractive head of lime green made up of a mass of small conical shaped florets forming a pointed curd not unlike a green cauliflower. Matures September to October
Romanesco Navona F1 - dark green curds with no braces. Excellent flavour. Plant mid June for harvesting late summer/ Autumn.
Snow Prince F1 - selected for maturity a little later. Sow in April and May to Harvest from September to October.
Snowball - dwarf compact plants can be set closer than others.
Sunset F1 - unique orange curds. Great raw in salads or as a cooked vegetable. Semi-upright habit with medium green leaves.
Cauliflowers are divided into the three quality classes:
- Cauliflowers in this class should be of the highest quality. They should have the shape, maturity and color characteristic of a given variety. Extra cauliflowers should be of the highest quality and should be presented very carefully. Cauliflowers should be: well-developed, firm and compact - with a very concise structure, with a uniform white or slightly creamy color, free from damage except for very small surface damage, provided that they do not affect the overall appearance of the product, its quality, quality maintenance and presentation in the packaging
In addition, the leaves of cauliflowers offered for sale with leaves or trimmed leaves should be fresh.
- Cauliflowers in this class should be of good quality. They should have the characteristics of a given variety. Class I cauliflowers should be of good quality and should be presented carefully. Cauliflowers should retain all the characteristics of the variety, however, cauliflowers with a different color are permissible, provided that they retain the characteristics of the class chosen and their color is characteristic of the variety. Cauliflowers should be: firm of a concise structure, white, cream or ivory, however, the following slight defects may be allowed, provided that they do not affect the general appearance of the product, its quality, maintenance and presentation in the package: slight defects in shape or development - slight defects in color - very slight covering with flesh. In addition, the leaves of cauliflowers offered for sale with leaves or trimmed leaves should be fresh. Violet - purple or green cauliflowers are permissible, provided that their quality corresponds to the class chosen should be fresh.
- This class includes cauliflowers which do not meet the requirements of the higher classes but satisfy the minimum requirements specified above. Class II cauliflowers should have the appropriate commercial quality and should be properly presented.
Cauliflowers can be: slightly deformed, with a slightly relaxed structure, with a yellowish color. They may have: light traces of sunburn, no more than 5 pale green leaves, a slight covering with a nap (but not damp or greasy to the touch). In addition, they may have two of the following disadvantages, provided that they do not affect their characteristics as to the quality, the keeping quality and presentation in the package: slight traces of damage caused by pests or diseases, minor surface damage caused by frost, slight bruising
The size of cauliflower
- The size of cauliflowers is determined by the maximum diameter. The minimum diameter should be 11 cm. The difference in diameters between the smallest and largest rose in the same package must not exceed 4 cm. The size requirements do not apply to miniature products.
- Cauliflower is mostly used as a fresh vegetable. The most common processing is freezing.
- Before frozening leaves must be cut and the head is fragmented
- Fresh cauliflower is is frozen in a freezing tunnel in the temperature -21 - -40C for a time necessary to obtain a temperature no higher than - 18 C.
- Frozen cauliflower retain most of the nutrients and flavors of fresh vegetable.
- Frozen cauliflower should be stored at a temperature no higher than- 18 C, in no more than 18 months.
xxxx - there is no mass production of dried cauliflower
Factors determining the quality of cauliflower:
- healthy; the product which begins to rot or spoil in such a way that it is unfit for consumption is excluded,
- clean, practically free of any visible foreign matter,
- practically free from pests,
- practically free from damage caused by pests,
- free of abnormal external moisture,
- free of any foreign smell and / or taste.
The development and condition of cauliflowers must be such that they enable:- transport and handling, and reaching the destination in a satisfactory condition.
Key factors that determine cauliflower prices:
- harvesting volume
- cultivation method (in field or greenhouses)
- efficiency of each variety
- weather conditions, especially during the vegetation period
- harvesting costs - mechanical or manual methods
- labor avaliability in harvesting period
- season of the year
- storage period
- transport costs