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Romanesco broccoli

Romanesco broccoli? Cauliflower? You decide!

This strange looking vegetable was first described in sixteenth-century Italy as broccolo romanesco, or Romanesco broccoli. But there has been confusion over what this weird vegetable actually is ever since!

A closer look.

A closer look.

We all seem to agree that the species this plant belongs to is Brassica oleracea L. which also includes cabbage, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and cauliflower. But which of those groups does it belong in? Well, that’s really up to you!

The French call it chou Romanesco, or “Romanesco cabbage” in English, but it sure doesn’t look like the cabbage you see at the grocery store! In Germany, it’s Pyramidenblumenkohl, meaning “pyramid cauliflower”. It’s known as Romanesco broccoli in Italy but sometimes as cavolo romanesco which means “Romanesco cabbage” as well. In English, we usually refer to it as Romanesco broccoli, but sometimes Romanesco cauliflower and even “broccoflower”!

The confusion over what to call the Romanesco broccoli is probably due to its odd appearance. No matter what you call it, it sure does look neat!

Romanesco Broccoli