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Cauliflower Comes In How Many Colors?

Published by Novie in Food
August 20th, 2006

Veggies are looking weird these days. I can’t help but wonder what will be next.

It used to be that all cauliflower, no matter where purchased or for how much, was always either one of two colors, white or brown, depending on its freshness factor. Then, suddenly the world was shocked to see green cauliflower, very cleverly named, “brocco-flower.” For many months you were given the option of buying the normal white/brown version, or the green/brown version and everyone was happy. Then, without any warning whatsoever, yellow cauliflower appeared in stores and the world was stunned again. This time they could not discover a zany name for it so they settled for, “yellow cauliflower”. Wow, that’s impressive. I probably would have called it, “lemon-flower” or, “urine-flower”. It’s no wonder I am not working in advertising.

Now, suddenly there has emerged something yet again new and unusual. Purple cauliflower. Tell me, what did they cross that with, eggplant? I wonder if you can eat nothing but various colored cauliflower for your daily veggie group and cover all the vitamin bases? The green stuff for whatever green veggies do, the yellow stuff for what yellow veggies do, and the purple stuff to look cool in your shopping cart.

I wonder what the next newest variety will be? Red? Orange? Salmon? Black? Blue? Pink? White? Oops. Been there, done that. It does not taste any different than the old fashioned version so what is the big deal here? How do they do it in the first place? Do they have to inject food coloring into each little sprout before it becomes a cauliflower head? Is it some kind of genetic re-engineering that will give us all cancer in ten years, or is it something that occurs in nature, like on the planet Jupiter? Questions, questions. My world is full of questions, most best left unanswered.

Today it’s cauliflower, tomorrow it could be your tomatoes….Oopsie. I’m afraid that too has seen its day. The old familiar red tomatoes now share the stage with yellow, orange and green tomatoes. Strange, I used to look at green tomatoes as being not-quite-so-ripe. But now they’re trying to tell me that green tomatoes are not only ripe but probably too ripe. What color were they while they were still un-ripe? Red? Just you wait, before long they’ll be offering us mushy black tomatoes that smell funny and proclaiming them the “newest variety in tomato taste sensations.” They’ll sell them for $2.99 lb.

Okay, perhaps cauliflower in all its rainbow glory is not exactly Earth-shattering news, but with today’s world in the horrible mess it’s in, who can count on produce growers to know what they’re doing? I mean, none of the rest of us knows what is going on anymore, so why should they? I can’t wait to see what will become the newest trendy trend in vegetables and fruits. I just hope whatever it is, it doesn’t clash with my new suit.

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  1. toof
    Posted November 18, 2009 at 3:52 pm

    The various colored cauliflower from what I understand do come from hybrids, but purple and green and yellow tomatoes are heirloom tomatoes, meaning that kind of biodiversity is natural. The real advertising trick was somewhere along the line convincing people who had grown 10, 20, 30 varieties of tomatoes for generations, to believe that tomatoes only come in one shape and size – the round, red variety.

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