Grown for their tender flowering shoots, this large family of vegetables is quite popular in China. Brassicas tend to be most flavorful if harvested just before the flowers open and are sweet enough to use lightly dressed in a fresh salad. In China, they are more typically cooked—steamed, boiled or stir-fried. They are a flavorful and colorful complement to meat, fish or chicken dishes, however, the shoots can quickly become overcooked. Japanese cooks like to pickle flowering brassicas. In the West, this vegetable makes a tasty addition to cream-based pastas. Many plants in this family are quite beautiful in the garden, some favoring cooler seasons and some preferring heat.