Vegetables never tasted so good! Chopped Broccoli and Cauliflower Salad is creamy, cheesy, and crunchy. And this version has no bacon!
There is certainly no shortage of broccoli and cauliflower salad recipes to be found on the internet or in cookbooks. So, what makes this one so special? What’s different about Lord Byron’s recipe? Well, let’s take a look!
Why another broccoli and cauliflower salad recipe?
Whenever I think of Broccoli and Cauliflower Salad, I think of my dad. This is one salad that he loves to make and show off. His version of this salad is so delicious and he makes it quite regularly. My version, unlike his, is vegetarian and has a few more ingredients.
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with the way he makes his and I always enjoy it immensely. But, I wanted to make my version without bacon – which tends to be always present in a broccoli and cauliflower salad – and I want to jazz it up a little bit and change the flavour profile.
I have also found that most broccoli and cauliflower salad recipes have too much mayonnaise, and have a touch of sugar. I really don’t think a salad like this needs sugar. The flavour of the broccoli and cauliflower should not be masked with sweeteners.
Another ingredient common to most salads of this type is dried cranberries. I opted to leave those out of mine, because I wanted the salad to be crunchy and I didn’t want the chewiness of the dried cranberry interfering with that raw vegetable crunch that we all know and love.
To lighten the salad up a bit, I decided to use a light mayonnaise, which I whisked with a light sour cream. In contrast, most salads will use just all regular mayonnaise. Don’t worry, Dear Reader, you are not losing out any flavour at all. The addition of the seasonings completely make up for any shortcomings.
Should this dish be eaten cold or at room temperature?
Even though this salad can be eaten right away, I think it’s best when everything is fully mixed together and then refrigerated for at least an hour. If you have time, especially if you want to prepare this dish ahead of time, you can leave it in the fridge for 3-4 hours and it will be even tastier.
This is not a small salad at all. After we all had a serving of it, there was still enough for all three of us to have another serving for dinner the next night. Leaving this salad in the fridge overnight will not hurt at all. Since the vegetables are not cooked, they will not break down as fast. Just toss it again and it’s ready to go. A little water will settle in the bottom of the container, but that’s nothing to be worried about.
Would this dish work well for a party?
Depending on the time of year, this Chopped Broccoli and Cauliflower Salad is very inexpensive to make. (Sometimes, cauliflower can be quite pricey, so watch for weekly sales.) Personally, this would be a dish that I would gladly serve at a summer picnic or a dinner in the park or at the beach. Think about any backyard barbecue or family reunion-type gathering. This salad would be perfect!
If you plan to bring this salad to a function that’s being held outdoors, be sure to pack it into a cooler so that the mayonnaise and sour cream don’t turn bad from any direct heat. I’ve never had an issue with mayonnaise or sour cream being in the sun for an hour or two, but you can never be too safe.
That’s it, Dear Reader. Here’s the recipe. And, thanks dad for the broccoli and cauliflower salad inspiration!
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Chopped Broccoli and Cauliflower Salad
- 1 head broccoli, cut into small florets (should yield about 4 cups)
- 1 head cauliflower, cut into small florets (should yield about 4 cups)
- 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
- 1/2 cup light mayonnaise
- 1/2 cup 5% sour cream
- 1 tablespoon vinegar, white or rice vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- Wash and chop the broccoli and cauliflower. Set aside to drain well.
- In a dry skillet, over medium-low heat, add the pine nuts and keep them moving around the skillet until toasted. They will begin to smell nutty and turn a golden brown colour. Remove from skillet and transfer to a shallow glass bowl immediately.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the mayonnaise, sour cream, vinegar, salt, ground black pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder. Whisk to combine.
- Add the broccoli and cauliflower. Toss well to coat and combine.
- Next, add the cheese and the pine nuts. Toss to combine.
- Cover and refrigerate for one hour or until ready to serve. Before serving, lightly toss again to re-distribute the ingredients.
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