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Organic purple cauliflower at Sang Lee Farms in Peconic. (Credit: Vera Chinese)
Organic purple cauliflower at Sang Lee Farms in Peconic. (Credit: Vera Chinese)

While nutritionists frequently say white foods tend to have fewer nutrients than leafy greens, cauliflower is packed with vitamin K, vitamin C and folate, bucking that trend.

Fall is the season of cruciferous vegetables on the North Fork and you will find purple and yellow version of this vitamin-dense veggie, as well as traditional white, at Sang Lee Farms in Peconic.

“We grow three different varieties on the farm,” said farm manager Lucy Senesac. “We have yellow, or cheddar cauliflower. Purple and white.”

The farm began harvested cauliflower about a week ago.

While the color might not necessarily impact cauliflower’s flavor, the varieties will carry different vitamins and antioxidants, Senesac said.

Senesac expects the farm to offer cauliflower heads until it closes for the season around Thanksgiving.

“If there is heavy frost then we could lose it, but it likes the cold,” Senesac said.

To prepare cauliflower, New York Times City Cooking columnist David Tanis recommends using high heat and plenty of spice.

Sang Lee grows about a quarter acre of cauliflower on its properties. Once a local farming staple, cauliflower growing declined so much in the second half of the 20th century that today even the Long Island Cauliflower Association has little to do with the crop it is named after.

“It’s one of those crops that Long Island was known for and that people look for out here,” she said.

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