Memorial Day weekend is the unofficial start of summer, and with that comes backyard get togethers, BBQ’s, and picnics. Chances are the usual cast of characters will be present at most summer gatherings. You know them well: coleslaw, potato salad, and pasta salad.
On a foodie level, this time of the year is a little bitter sweet. While I am ready to say goodbye to the long, cold winter, I am hesitant to say goodbye to my fall and winter cooking. My dinged up, decades old stock pot receives plenty of love and use over the course of those six months. So many hearty, heart-warming, slow-cooked soups, sauces, and family favorites have emerged from it. Their scents have filled our home and taken the chill from the air. They’ve put the comfort in food.
Cauliflower is my favorite vegetable. There’s simply no contest. I am amazed at its versatility. It is so much more than just a bunch of boiled white florets. Cauliflower puree is nothing short of luxurious and is the perfect bed for a perfectly grilled steak. Roasted cauliflower tossed in parmesan cheese and herbs is a snack-able treat. Pureed cauliflower serves as a perfect and healthy base to any cream soup. Pizza crust. Breadsticks. Cauliflower rice. The possibilities are endless.
My garden is growing well. It’s not all pretty or terribly organized or free of weeds, but it is growing. Lacinato kale, basil, and green beans have been reliable producers (and have been oh so delicious this year). I have an out-of-control spaghetti squash plant that has affixed itself to my air conditioning unit. There are the beginnings of several watermelon (which seem really late to me). And, finally, my tomato plants. Well, they are out of control. The tomato bed looks like an untamed jungle. There are plenty of green tomatoes waiting to ripen and once they do (likely all at the same time), I will be inundated with these delicious gems.