As the leaving date for Britain’s withdrawal from the EU approaches, I have decided to publish a recipe on something that also splits the nation down the middle, 52:48.
Sprouts are feared because they aren’t cooked properly in the UK. Most of the time they are reserved for being boiled to death on Christmas Day, which absolutely ruins the aesthetic, taste, texture and overall chakra alignment of those blessed mini cabbages. Naturally, some people enjoy this soggy mess, citing it as nostalgic, or traditional – two adjectives which require careful treatment in the context of gastronomy. I won’t tell you you’re entirely wrong for enjoying boiled Brussels Sprouts, but really, cooked in the way I’m about to describe, these little babies are transformed into a luscious side dish – rather than just token gobs of moss-coloured mush teetering on the edge of a much better looking roast dinner.
These tender, golden-edged stir fried sprouts are flavoured with dark soy sauce, cumin seeds, and smoked paprika but feel free to use any herbs or spices you like (within reason, you animals).
You will need:
- 500g of sprouts, cut in half lengthways
- 2 tsp of smoked paprika
- 2 tsp of cumin seeds
- a large glug of dark soy sauce
- Cumin seeds
- Light oil for stir frying
Ok, get your cleavered sprouts and put them in a microwavable bowl and heat them on full power in the microwave for around 6-7 minutes. This softens them slightly so they aren’t raw in the middle and cooked on the outside at the next stage of cooking. While the sprouts are in the microwave, heat up the oil in a wok on a high heat. Add the cumin seeds and fry for a bit. When your sprouts ping, tip them into the hot oil straight away and keep them moving. Add your soy sauce and smoked paprika and stir fry until the flat faces of the sprouts go a lovely deep golden colour. This can take anywhere from 3-8 minutes depending on your wok/oil/hob etc, so keep your eyes on it at all times. Taste them to see if they need anything else – perhaps a little salt and pepper wouldn’t go amiss, but perhaps you got the soy sauce bang-on and it’s perfecto.
I tend to eat these by themselves as part of my chaotic and ridiculous lifestyle, but they’re lovely next to just about anything, and for a full meal can probably served with rice and topped with a poached egg but that’s far too sensible.
Also for this blog post I really did try to have a brexit/sprout analogy but the whole thing made me a bit sad so I gave up and now you have a quite normal, manageable recipe which delivers tasty results on time and doesn’t require an extension or a billionaire media campaign to work magic.