While on the topic of purple “mutants” (see previous entry on purple beans), I figured I might as well post this out of season photo of a stunning head of purple broccoli. For the past 3-4 years, I always get surprised when a market vendor stocks purple broccoli which tends to appear during the cold months of December-February. Some vendors say this is purple cauliflower, others broccoli and my books say it is essentially a variety of broccoli, somewhat related to purple sprouting broccoli which has much smaller florets and seems to be a native of Italy or thereabouts. Cookbooks always warn you that the color will turn green when the vegetable is cooked but when I added it to a “12 vegetable soup” in little tiny florets, they retained much of the purple color though in a lighter shade…it really made for a colorful and unusual soup. It is not often that you find this vegetable in Manila (it is typically grown in Benguet and surrounding areas) and I encourage all of you to try it if you see it.