Thursday, March 19, 2009

Theme Thursday - Brussells Sprouts Are Not Fairy Cabbages


“We kids feared many things in those days - werewolves, dentists, North Koreans, Sunday school - but they all paled in comparison with Brussels Sprouts."
Dave Barry, Miami Herald Columnist


Brussels Sprouts are not Fairy cabbages! No self respecting fairy would come within 10 metres of the poxty gobby little green mites and they're hardly ambrosia for the ethereals . . .

My overly buxom and attentive grandma would try to convince me that the green balls of gloob were good for me after being boiled for far too long in far too much water as she 'choo choo'd' a spoonful of olive green moosh in an effort to tempt me to swallow what can only be described as Knobgobbles for Goblins.

Even my mother who was an absolute health freak and tried to disguise the disgust with crispy bacon and caramelised shallots persisted in serving the little balls of badness because they were 'good for us' and I suspect very inexpensive. Then this was a woman who'd make a meal out of broad beans, bacon and onions or red cabbage with apple and bacon (which actually tasted very delish I might add).

So, whilst the Europeans seem to feel that these little green balls of bollocks are suitable for the Christmas dinner table, no-self respecting Australian will be caught anywhere nearer than the fairies when it comes to Chou de Bruxelles, in fact I rarely even see them in the greengrocer . . they're tucked away in a quiet corner for all those who feel homesick and need the equivalent of vegetable snot to constitute comfort food!

I know I'll cause great division in the ranks here because there's no middle road when it comes to the vegetable introduced to the Flemish (well before they were Flemish of course) and then fled the Gallic climes in favour of watching Rome burn (apologies to Emperor Ropi for deliberate historical inaccuracy) and leaving their blasted Brussels behind . . .

As the photograph suggests, they have nothing to offer other than foul tasting mush and a smelly aftermath. Useful for little more than a 'good road through' as my old man would say and emptying a room with a curtain clinger.

48 comments:

tony said...

The Answer ,My Friend,Is Blowing In The Wind.........

Miles McClagan said...

Brussel Sprouts are still a far lesser evil than Comedy Inc was...

Grow Up said...

I detect a fair amount of slime related imagery there. This leads me to believe that what you have had is badly cooked sprouts. Not that it matters now, the damage has been done. But just about cooked with a little butter and they are grand. Also they are nice quartered in a stir-fry. My 4 year old likes them, and then farts like a trooper. I'm proud. Asphyxiated but proud.

Ronda Laveen said...

The photo is great! Not so much for sales, but for a laugh. The dreaded sprouts make nice bullets to throw at siblings.

TheChrisD said...

Don't get me fucking started on the sprouts...

Horrible little devils :(

English Mum said...

*gasp*

But I love sprouts! I'm with Growup - lightly blanched sprouts stir-fried with a little pancetta are just divine. And they make amazing Bubble and Squeak too! Grannies cut crosses in the bottom so they soak up the maximum amount of water when they're boiling them for several hours and then they're vile.

Yes, the after effects are slightly unpleasant (especially on Bert), but they're well worth experimenting on, honestly!!

Mrsupole said...

Yes, the trick is to not overcook them. They actually taste so different when they are overcooked verus when they are cooked just right. Hubby likes them and always wants me to make them and I just never do. I think as a child I got too many overcooked ones and so will usually pass this veggie up, because I would probably overcook it too.

But if you ever get to try them cooked correctly they really are good and worth having. And yes you will fart your brains out with these things, I think that is why hubby likes them. He still won't grow up.

God bless.

ashleigh said...

Ha ha ha, EXCELLENT photo. Love it.

My mum used to like the horrible little blighters. In spite of all my complaining about how horible they are, she'd say "I know yoy dont like them so I didn't give you as many as the rest of the family". Gee thanks mum, what happened to the idea of NONE AT ALL?


Since leaving home, I've not touched one in over 25 years. YAY!

Candie Bracci said...

Hi Baino

Beurk,beurk,beurk and beurk!
I love almost all vegetables but that one no way!

Tony:LOL

hokgardner said...

Three things I will never make my kids eat:

1. Liver
2. Lima beans
3. Brussells Sprouts

Blech.

nick said...

Me, I adore Brussel sprouts, I love the taste. Don't have them often though, because preparing them's so fiddly.

steph said...

LOL

Try adding black pepper!

We have to hold on to the duvet after Brussel sprouts.

Taffy's Mum said...

I saw someone shred them and lightly fry them on a UK TV programme called Ready, Steady Cook and the dish looked really tasty.

I will confess that having been brought up to have a little of everything on my plate incase my tastes change I do like brussels (although not boiled to a mush). It's a greyt way to get my own back on the hounds ;)

Ces said...

I have never cooked brussels sprouts and when I first came to the US, I tried it at our hospital cafeteria. It was okay, I'd rather eat something else. I think when it is introduced to someone when she is an adult who is more open to new tastes, the verdict is not so fatal for the poor little veggie. I also saw the sprouts sold from the stalk, so that was very cool. I thought they were miniature cabbages. I love vegetables of different colors and shape and brussels sprouts belong to the cute category but have not really found a good recipe to mix it with my other veggies.

I see how much you love it. Haha!

Leah said...

You're right: love 'em or leave 'em. I love 'em, just not overboiled!

Leah said...

Oh and re above comment, I love liver and lima beans too! does that make me a freak?

tut-tut said...

Why, I had some just last evening. And very delish they were, too. You are right; no middle ground here!

Cuppa Jo said...

I love brussels sprouts! I think they're tasty. But you know, fairies aren't necessarily nice people, or so I've heard. It would be their sense of humor.

Gledwood said...

one of the best things about being "grown up" is that i NEVER EVER have to touch a brussels sprout EVER AGAIN!!!!

subtorp77 said...

Gee Baino, and I thought the okra was bad! Nothing wrong with Brussel sprouts, here. Then again, I also like liver. But it's the limas I can without( sorry Leah ).

The Clever Pup said...

Very funny signage.

Eat your greens!!

Brian Miller said...

love the pic! too true. my mother made them marinated every year at christmas... there are too many of them hidden in my aunts couch where we avoided eating them. lol.

reyjr said...

come to think of it, i've never had brussel sprouts. and from how you described them, i don't think i ever will. haha!

Moon said...

Thank you for the skype contact ..... xxxxxxx

Wings said...

Love that pic - that's what my daughter thinks of ALL veggies!

willow said...

"Little Green Balls of Death"! I love it!!

Megan said...

Can't stand 'em, myself. That's a fantastic sign!!

Roy said...

Baino, I used to feel as you do: Godawful mushy, mealy, horrible excuse for food! But trust me on this - it doesn't have to be that way. I've heard the word and seen the light, and now Brussels Sprouts are as ambrosia on my tongue!

The secret? DO NOT ADD WATER! Don't boil or steam 'em, you only create problems that way. Broiled, grilled , or sauteed, that's the ticket. And do none of those things for very long, just a little surface carmelizing and they're ready to eat.

My saviors were chefs Ori and Josh on the Grill A Chef blog. They always have these great ideas about food. Right now they're running a recipe for chestnut stuffing. They definitely showed me that Brussels Sprouts didn't need to be evil.

Baino said...

G'day Tony . . aint that the truth! I avoid cabbage for much the same reason!

True Miley . .both stink

Indeed Grow Up my Gran was your typical post war boilthebejesus out of everything cook. Ruined the humble sprout for ever!

Now Ronda there's a useful pastime and a great way to utilise the humble sprout!

Thank you ChrisD, we are voices in the wilderness among this lot!

Yeh well EM, if anyone can do the Chou de Bruxelles justice you can! I'm still not convinced!

Mrsupole, we have such a selection of veggies in Oz from Asian greens to the more traditional European stuff that there is absolutley NO NEED to cook a sprout!

Ah Ash! A fellow in arms! It's true tho, I think our mothers cooked the bejesus out of them so we now have a well developed aversion. My mum used to cook them to perfection but they still made me gag!

Oooh Candie, the 'nos' are swelling . .looking about even by now!

Hokkie, I'm ok with beans, not liver but it does make a nice gravy and sprouts . . only if it was the last vegetable on earth and I starving.

Nick how so? Peel, snip off the bottom and steam . . or stir fry with some bacon and onion or here's a thought . . put them in the compost!

Ah the good ol dutch oven method Steph!

Taffy's mum . . great thing about having a dog in close proximmity, they always get blamed for the botty burps!

Ces, I've never actually seen them sold on the stalk but they do grow like that apparently. Gimme baby bok choy and a little oyster sauce any day! The Brits are fond of kale as well which is just chewey cabbage to my mind!

Nope, not a freak but I'm not fond of offal. We avoid calling it 'liver' here . .it's 'lambs fry' yuk!

tut-tut, Tut-tut! I have a recipe that includes blanched almonds . .anything to take away the flavour of the original vegetable!

Cuppa Jo, fairies get a bad rap, it's not true, they don't bite at all that's all the work of Knobgoblins and pissed pixies.

Yeay Gleds . .now all I have to do is wean you off fish fingers, god knows what's in them!

Subby what did the humble Lima bean ever do to you! The odds are changing again . . more lovers than haters.

Clever Pup, I LOVE My greens, just not all wrapped up in soggy canon balls.

Haha Brian . .you're supposed to feed them to the dog! Imagine what they're like now . .little crusty balls of oderiferous cabbage.

revir! Good man .. .avoid them at all costs!

Moon you're welcome. I'd have hung around but my puter crashed. Difficult times ahead for you, feel free to vent at any time you see that little green cloud.

Wings, I have a nephew who's 9 and he's vetoed anything green, we hide spinach in his bolognaise!

Cool init! At least they warn you!

Megan . . something ELSE we have in common . .spooky as Dame Edna would say!

Oh Roy, you've almost made ma a 'born again sprouter'. They are cheap I must admit and inexpensive fare is always on my menu . . maybe . .just maybe . .I'll give em another chance.

Nancy said...

Baino,

When I was in the 5th grade I was taught by a Nun by the name of Sister Florina.

The thing about Sister Florina was, she LOVED Brussel Sprouts and we always knew the next day when she had eaten them the day before.

She wore a long black habit and all of a sudden it would start to lift up and blow around and the odor that emanated from under that skirt would take the paint off the walls..

We had a blind girl in our class who had a seeing eye dog named Freddie, and when Freddie would begin to whine and try to drag the girl out of danger , we knew it would be bad...

Whenever Sister had a Feast Day celebration and all the kids had to bring canned goods and veggies to the honoree, you could depend on it that she would NOT receive any Brussel Sprouts....

Colette Amelia said...

Well I wouldn't go out of my way for them and as far as I know they don't even make a good mushy dip for crackers?

Must be a culinary genius to make these guys tantalizing!

dennis said...

Dennis prepares his Brussels Sprouts like this--you remove the stinky core--that's no good, just cut it out, and then the leaves fan out, lovely little leaves. separate the leaves a bit, then sautee in evoo or butter. completely different than the stinky balls that most people eat.

dennis said...

Dennis says it's the CORE that causes all the trouble Trust Dennis, it's easier than shelling peas to fix the BS

Susan said...

That photo is marvellous! (I was going to call it 'priceless' but that wouldn't be strictly true...)

It took me thirty years to learn to like these things, and now I just can't eat them, for reasons already mentioned. Dang.

Auntie, aka cagny said...

Greetings from the Bronx NY,
Brussel sprouts used to make me gag, until just a few years ago. Now I steam them, and serve them with salt, pepper, and a dash of butter.
Yes, they can taste & smell bad.
I guess it's an acquired taste.
Do you like caulifour? I've just learned to like that too!
Thank you for visiting my blog.
Hope to chat with you again.

Auntie, aka cagny said...

PS
there are some really funny comments here! So much liver, lima beans, and farting.
LOL

jay said...

I LOVE brussells sprouts! They - along with broccoli - are one of my favourite veg!! I know, I know, I'm putting myself way beyond the pale by admitting it, but it's true.

The trick is to not overcook them, you know. LOL!

I love the picture, too! Can I pinch it?

Patrice said...

I hated them as a child - but my mother overcooked most things thinking it was the way to kill all germs (and taste.)

But I've learned that Brussels sprouts - steamed briefly until a sharp knife passes through the center, smothered in butter (okay, Smart Balance), and sprinkled with Parmesan cheese - are actually quite a delicacy...

(heh)

laughingwolf said...

lol... i hear there IS a recipe that makes them... uh... bearable? :O

supposedly all in the prep...

Evening Light Writer said...

Nasty gross stinky. They smell like feet, like three day old garbage. My mother never made me eat them, she couldn't stand them either. I detest them!

River said...

I love brussels sprouts. Always have.

Kris said...

Far out Brussels sprout!

Baino said...

Nancy that's awful . as my grannyused to say 'where ere you be, let your wind go free'

God collette! Brussel Sprout dip! Disgusting

Dennis is one cool cat!

O dear . . .Suze, although I can't imagine anyone craving a sprout!

Aunty you're welcome to them and yes, I actually like cauliflower but it needs to be dressed up a bit!

Jay go ahead . .you know you're only proving that English cuisine really is an oxymoron!

Patrice, you can have your sprout and eat it!

Wuffa there have been a few recipe suggestions here but I'm still not convinced!

Yeay Evening . . another one has seen the light!

River . . .each to their own . .I knew this would polarise commenters.

and Kris . . someone had to say it, might as well be you!

laughingwolf said...

can't blame you, baino... i've yet to enjoy em :(

kj said...

i like brussel sprouts. i probably have them once a month anyway, with chicken and rice or something like that. i've grown them in my garden a couple of times too. they are damn adorable on their stalks--like ping pong balls!
:)

Dakota Bear said...

Definitely badly cooked brussels sprouts have ruined your taste buds. Boiling any vegetable other than a potato removes any decent flavor and ruins the texture.

The way I cook them is to cut them in half and cook until just tender in a little olive oil along with garlic, a little salt and some pepper.

gaudiumdegaea said...

I love Brussel Sprouts! Yum Yum!

mouse (aka kimy) said...

...the secret is not to overcook them - the best prep is to roast them in a hot, hot oven with olive oil and garlic....every thing is better with garlic! boil and spoil!