Romanesco. Is it broccoli? Is it cauliflower? Or just a mathematician’s wet dream?
The other day while I was browsing for some evening provender at Whole
It was a bizarre bit of synchronicity. I had only just the prior day read an article about that most mathematically fascinating vegetable, all the while bemoaning the fact that I had never seen it offered in the Atlanta food stores I frequent. And yet, there it was in all its fractal glory. I had to buy some.
|Koch snowflake. [Courtesy Wikipedia.]|
As you zoom into a self-similar fractal image, you see the same thing regardless of scale. Of course, in a living organism like Romanesco, things begin to get a little “fuzzy” as you get closer and closer, but the same overall configuration is still visible.
Why the Romanesco DNA decided to code for such elegant beauty, I have no idea. The religious-minded can use it as an example of the power and subtle wisdom of the Creator: other folks may attribute it to millions of years of mutative randomness.
As for me, it works as both Art Form and as Dinner. I sliced up and roasted that sumbitch with olive oil, kosher salt, and capers. It was delicious.