I have only recently begun to like Brussel Sprouts, which as a vegetable lover, and one that is usually a fan of brassicas is quite odd. As much as I’d like to blame this on bad cooking, the fact is, I’ve tried them in various guises, at times apallingly boiled & over cooked, at others sprightly and green.
The thing is.. although I thought I just might be able to grow to like them, I had never eaten them flavoured in the way that I thought might bring out their natural sweetness or enhance their slight tang of sulpher in a nice way. Quite a few recipes pair Brussels with bacon or ham, which I’m sure works well, but obviously that’s not for me. Others make use of their affinity to savoury, spicy flavours… much more up my street.
So, despite my dislike of these little cabbage relatives, I persevered, and finally hit upon a truly delicious way of cooking them. Just in time for Christmas!
What I have ended up creating as my favourite way of cooking Brussel Sprouts is pairing them with nutty pumpkin seeds, plus loads of garlic & chilli. The trick is to slightly ‘char’ the brussels in your wok or frying pan before adding the garlic & chilli and oil. This gives them a caramelised edge, which sweetens their flavour, and changes their naturally sulfurous edge to something pleasant & ever so slightly addictive.
In the recipe, I’ve added a sprinkle of pomegranate seeds, these add a lovely festive colour to the dish, and a juicy crunch, but are by no means essential.
- 250 g brussel sprouts , sliced into 3rds
- 75 g pumpkin seeds , coarsley chopped
- 3 cloves garlic finely minced
- 1 small chilli , finely minced
- 1 tsp marigold stock powder
- small sprinkle thyme
- 1/4 cup white wine
- salt & pepper
- Sprinkling of pomegranate seeds to serve
Add a bit of olive oil to a wok & get it nice & hot.
Add the brussels, and give them a few minutes to get a little charred on the edges.
Add the garlic & chilli & cook until the garlic is translucent
Add all other ingredients except the pomegranate. give it a stir, then clamp a lid down over the sprouts.
Let them all steam/cook together until the sprouts are slightly softened
Serve sprinkled with pomegranate seeds for colour