For larger florets cut just above the thick stem so the smaller stems are free to separate. For smaller florets, cut closer to the head of each smaller stem. They will fall away into smaller pieces. For some dishes it is nice to have sliced stem and leaves. After removing florets peel stem with a sharp knife. This can be done by cutting it in half, standing on end and cutting downward, and removing outer tough skin. The small leaves can be cooked along with stems and florets. Use only the small, tender leaves, they are very rich in vitamin C.