Meet the growers: Werribee cauliflower

What does it take to get your produce into the MasterChef kitchen? We spoke to a farmer who grows the cauliflower you see at Coles and on MasterChef Australia. Plus, check out the delicious recipe from one of our favourite former contestants.

Coles cauliflower supplier John

From cauliflower steaks to pickled cauliflower, there appears to be no limit to what MasterChef Australia contestants have created with this vegetable since the show began 12 years ago. Coles cauliflower supplier, John Said, believes the show has helped give cauliflower a modern makeover. “They’ve made cauliflower incredibly sexy,” he says. “People are looking for how to cook veggies in different ways. The contestants have come up with some great out-of-the-box ideas that are quite simple and taste fantastic.”

That’s why John’s excited about what this year’s contestants will do with the eye-catching purple cauliflower his company, Fresh Select, are supplying nationally throughout Coles this year. “I think it would be great pickled, pureed as a colour enhancement on the plate, or simply raw in a coarse cauliflower rice,” John says. “It’s got such a beautiful shape and colour, I’d like to see them hero it as a centrepiece, too.”

For those cooking cauliflower at home, John encourages us to step away from the compost bin. “Try to use as much of the cauliflower as possible – the leaves, the stem and the core. It’s 100 per cent usable,” he says. “I love oven-roasting cauliflower, either whole or cut into florets – it gets sweeter as it cooks. You can add whatever spices you like.” When it comes to storing, John recommends keeping cauliflower in a paper bag or airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.

Courtney Roulston’s harissa purple cauliflower with macadamia cream

This eye-catching harissa cauliflower tastes and good as it looks. Give it a go for a delicious vegetarian main.