Thursday, 2 December 2010

Brussels Sprouts Hash

Early last year, I harvested a mound of sprouts from the allotment plot. This year, I did have some Brussels growing in the garden plot with designs to enjoy them on Christmas day, but each and every one of them was decimated by the white cabbage butterfly, my Number 1 garden pest this year. I have decided if I am still limited to growing space next year, I will not be raising any of the Brassica family, (well maybe just one – the mighty kale) as my other plants were also affected by this pest and its offspring.

I've had this 'Brussels Sprouts hash' recipe bookmarked for inspiration, ever since I acquired the book from an Oxfam bookshop. Now that sprouts are appearing at farmers markets and on supermarket shelves, I thought I’d have a go at finally making these. You know what is kind of funny, my blog is about (growing and) cooking seasonal vegetables, but I was once a reluctant vegetable eater. On this vegetable dislike list there has been aubergine, broccoli, cauliflower, okra and now sprouts. On the positive side though, I have attempted and found recipes to make these vegetables palatable for me. A vegetable that once would never land in my shopping basket is now approached in a completely different manner. The hard part now is persuading others to overcome their reluctant attitude towards certain vegetables; or even vegetable based cuisine.

It was only last year, I found my favourite way of eating sprouts. Simply roasted in the oven they are completely transformed from green pellets to caramelised nuggets . Reminds me, I must share that with my brothers, they too never liked their sprouts. I think this Sprouts hash is a close second favourite of mine.
There are a number of Brussels sprout hash recipes on the web. Many of them include bacon or its upmarket sister, pancetta. This however is made without meat, caramelized and turned golden crisp in olive oil. Its good, good, good and that is high praise from me for a sprout recipe.

If you have little ones or big kids who don’t like sprouts, make these and sell it to them as little cabbages. I think they will enjoy them.
The pan will be overspilling with raw veg at first, but slow cooking is essential here. This may take up to 30 to 40 minutes for the veg to shrink and turn golden soft. So Be patient, it is worth the wait.
Brussels Sprouts Hash
Serves 3 -4 with accompaniments
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, finely sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
250g Brussels sprouts, trimmed of stems and cut into quarters
1 large or 2 medium potatoes, peeled and chopped into even size cubes (make sure they are chopped to cook in the same time as the sprouts)
100ml water
Salt and pepper to taste
In a large pan, heat the oil. Add the onion, garlic and saute them until soft. Add the sprouts and the potatoes and cook for about 5 minutes moving the vegetables around to prevent from sticking. Then add the water, salt and pepper to taste and cook until the water evaporates. Now turn the heat up and saute the vegetables, shake the pan or stir the vegetable now and again, so that all sides turn colour. Keep doing this, until the vegetables are cooked through. Serve immediately. Inspired by a recipe from Vegetarian Planet by Didi Emmons.


  1. the humble sprout is so underrated. I appreciate they're virtues and would happily tuck into seconds of yours :o)

  2. Congratulations- you've actually got me excited about trying brussel sprouts for the first time ever! My memories of them consist of overcooked watery greens being forced on me as a child at christmas- needless to say it wasn't much fun. When they're in season over here I'm totally trying this recipe thanks! xxx

  3. Hmmm, love sprouts! This looks like a dish that will be making an appearance on my menu - soon! Thank you!

  4. I was also once a hater of brussels sprouts, but as an adult have come to absolutely adore them. I only just planted seeds yesterday, I hope they take... I haven't had them roasted though, look forward to trying that.

    ps okra will never pass onto my "like" list :O

  5. We all love Brussel sprouts in the house. Yours look divine. Thank you for that recipe.

  6. mmm, sprouts! i'll have to try this method -- i bet they taste great with potatoes.

  7. Thanks Nic.
    I adnmire Your appreciation for the humble sprout. :o)

    Thanks Almost.Skinny.
    So pleased to read that i've got you excited about trying brussel sprouts! Yay success!

    So pleased you like Ocean Breezes and Country Sneezes. Thanks :)

    Thanks Ali.
    Its wonderful what a few years can do to our taste buds!
    I hope your seeds germinate, It was always hit and miss for me.

    ps Try okra, sliced and then sovered in spicy chickpea batter and then deep fry. It may just change your mind :O

    Thanks spécialiste de l'éphémère.
    Wow, a family that love Brussel sprouts. Amazing. Great to know.

    Please do try this sara.
    There GOOD!

  8. I adore sprouts, up there with swede as one of my favourite veg. I do love them roasted too.

  9. Kath.
    It real good to know of someone who does actually does 'adore their sprouts! :)


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