Cauliflower is the new kale

Daniel Krieger

Pureed, fried or grilled, cauliflower is the (surprisingly nutritious) ingredient of the moment. Here’s where to eat it.

Mi Lah Vegetarian,218 S. 16th St.

Don’t let the “vegetarian” in the name scare you off — Mi Lah does some of the most inventive dishes in town, and you’ll be too busy deciphering the Asian-influenced flavors to realize there’s no meat your plate. Order the hearty Curried Cauliflower Steak, served withbutter spinach puree, yellow squash and roasted beets.

Volver,330 S. Broad St.

The cauliflower is subtle in Iron Chef Jose Garces’ lauded From the Garden dish — but then again, so is everything else in this delicately balanced salad made with carrots, curried raisons, pistachio puree, Meyer lemon puree, goat cheese, duck skin crumble and almond milk crisps. It’s on both the six-course and 12-course prix fixe menus.

Zahav,237 St. James Place

Michael Solomonov’s modern Israeli restaurant does a fried cauliflower for the mezze (small plates) menu that gets raves in every review. It even earned a Food & Wine magazine Best Restaurant Dishes of 2008 nod when Zahav opened. The dish isserved with labaneh, a Middle Eastern yogurt, blended with chive, dill, mint and garlic.

Palladino’s,1934 E. Passyunk Ave.

You almost don’t want to waste room on the sides at Luke Palladino’s first Philly restaurant, but take one less bite of that butternut squash ravioli to make space for the roasted cauliflower with garlic, chilies and parsley. Or come in for a cocktail and an order of the cauliflower and zucca, coated in lemon tempura batter.

Bing BingDim Sum,1648 E. Passyunk Ave.

This new spot from the Cheu Noodle guys is another inventive rift on Asian cuisine, so it’s no surprise everyone talks about the oversized soup dumplings and the pan-fried bao. But don’t miss out on the fried cauliflower, made with a dried shrimp “salt,” lemon and scallion.

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