Cauliflower is another tasty, healthy vegetable that's in season now. White cauliflowers are easy to find, but it's worth seeking out green and purple varieties too. Or try Romanesco cauliflowers, with their spectacular pointed florets and sweet flavour.
Cauliflower can be bland and boring, especially if overcooked, so it's best teamed with strong flavours such as mackerel, curry spices or garlic. And strongly flavoured cheese – mature cheddar, stilton or parmesan, for example – is a perfect partner.
For a classic cauliflower cheese, boil or steam cauliflower florets for 5-10 minutes – you want them to be tender, but not soggy. For the cheese sauce, melt 30g butter and stir in a rounded tablespoon of plain flour. Add 280ml milk, a little at a time, stirring well to remove any lumps. Bring to boiling point then immediately reduce the heat to the lowest possible setting. Cook for 5 minutes, then add a handful of grated mature cheddar. Stir until the cheese has melted, then add the cauliflower and mix gently until all the florets are coated with the sauce. Serve with pasta, or sausages and mashed potato.
Cauliflower can also be eaten raw, along with carrots and other crudités to dip into houmous or guacamole, or roasted with olive oil and cumin seeds. To stir fry cauliflower, break the florets into small pieces and cook in a wok with garlic, spring onions, lime juice and soy sauce.