Friday, 24 October 2008

Brussel tops rock!

I've got a bit of fixation about sprouts at the moment having discovered they are quite ridiculously healthy. Not only does an average 80g serving contain more vitamin C than an orange but they apparently contain higher levels of cancer-fighting compounds than any of their fellow brassicas including broccoli.

People hate them though, don't they? And for good reason. If they're boiled too long - as they generally were when I was a kid they go disgustingly soggy and sulphurous. I don't like them raw, I must admit, which is the best way to eat them from a health point of view but I've taken to stir frying them which works really well with either garlic, ginger and soy or with onions and bacon.

And then there's brussel tops (or should it be brussels tops?) which are at the tip of the plant and until recently were discarded or fed to cattle, my local greengrocer told me yesterday. He was selling them for 48p a lb (he steadfastly refuses to go metric) and the head above - enough for two - cost me just 17p.

I love them. The leaves are sweeter than cabbage, delicious steamed and tossed with butter or shredded and added to a soup or a stew. Enough to make you feel smug on every count - taste, health and cost!

7 comments:

notSupermum said...

I love sprouts, and luckily so does my youngest daughter so we eat a lot of them during sprout season.
I've never seen brussel tops on sale though - although we don't have a greengrocer locally, just the usual supermarkets.

Fiona Beckett said...

I think they'll probably become more widely available NSM although the supermarkets probably won't take them up as they cost less than sprouts!

mimimo said...

I was always told they were 'fairy cabbages' as a child so this may help mothers with reluctant sprout eaters..!

Fiona Beckett said...

What a great idea, mimimo! I always found the way you described dishes made a huge difference to whether kids would eat them. I remember persuading my son to eat shepherds pie by calling it 'mince and mash'.

notSupermum said...

Fairy cabbages? Lovely! I made a 'nearly cottage pie' last night (that's mince and mash too!) and the girls enjoyed it just as much. We also had sprouts, although my eldest daughter won't eat them. She had peas.

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Gastroboar said...

Always been known as Brussel fairies in our house, must be their frilly skirts and desperate desire for attention, always a joy

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