They're the Marmite of the festive spread, but you can't forget the Christmas Brussels sprouts. We've put together some tips that might just convert a few doubters into diners this Christmas.
Love them or hate them, it wouldn't be Christmas dinner without the Christmas Brussels sprouts. Not much is known about the origin of the humble sprout, or even whether they originated in Brussels, but there have been records of them found around Belgium since the 13th century.
Choosing your Christmas Brussels sprouts
Not all sprouts are created equal. The huge golf ball sized ones can be a bit too tough, so opt for smaller and more tender heads. Look for tight leaves and a bright green colour, discarding any yellowing ones or those with black spots. Sprouts purchased on their stalk look very dramatic, but it doesn't make a huge difference to the taste and freshness! They're a hardy vegetable and will stay fresh for a day or two uncovered in the fridge before cooking. When preparing Brussels sprouts, give them a quick rinse before removing any looser leaves and cutting off any hardened stalks. We're about to upset your granny now, but there's not really any need to cut a cross in the base of your Christmas Brussels sprouts - in fact, doing so could lead to overcooking.
How to cook Brussels sprouts
In short, less is more! Overcooked, mushy sprouts aren't on anyone's Christmas list. Lots of Brussels sprouts recipes have cropped up that inject some extra flavour into your sprouts with the addition of a meaty treat, like chorizo or bacon. They're a great partner to Christmas brussels sprouts as they hold up well to the salty flavours. If you're planning Brussels sprouts with bacon this Christmas, try parboiling your sprouts and finishing them off in a pan with smoked bacon lardons and a bit of butter. We love Brussels sprouts with bacon and chestnuts - use the same method, but add chopped cooked chestnuts at the same time as the bacon.
The best sprouts - done and dusted!
We were looking for a delicious break from traditional Brussels sprouts and that's when we came up with our original Brussels Sprouts Dust. This deliciously fragranced dust has been created to liven up the boring, old brussels sprouts to create irresistible sprouts that no one will complain about! The dust includes ginger, garlic, chilli, cumin, coriander, cardamom and paprika. All of these spices have been combined together to create a delicious Indian flavour. Your guests will be coming back for more…
How to use our Brussels Sprouts Dust:
- Parboil your sprouts.
- Cut sprouts in half, then finish in a pan with some salt, butter and sprinkle over the dust.
- That's it, you're done!