Paddock to Plate
Green, round and a rare combination of health & flavour.
Find out more about the little Brussel Sprouts.
Super Spirals of Celebrity Fame.
The year is 1750. Winter. Europe sits cold, sleeping under a blanket of snow.
All is peaceful and calm, but in Brussels a fad is growing. A new vegetable has burst on the scene and everyone wants one. They’re sprouts, and they’re so little and so sweet.
Chefs go wild, traders sell them far and wide. Brussels sprouts take the world by storm. They conquer Europe, soar in popularity in America and even hop a ride to Australia in 1788.
There is no looking back!
Brussels sprouts sit on a long stem in neat rows.
Some of them spiral around the stalk – they’re super cool mathematical veg.
The sprouts look just like tiny cabbages (which is what they are). But Brussels sprouts stay small, becoming looser and floppy as they grow older, until finally, the plant bursts into flower like a firework of little yellow flowers on long stalks.
Did you know?
As well as oats, apples, pears and strawberries, the First Fleet brought “12 baskets of garden seed” to Australia in 1788.
Although the Indigenous population of Australia fed themselves well from the land, the Europeans did not know the local edible plants. They brought a variety of seeds and plants with them to ensure their food supply.
Officers and upper-class settlers wanted to have that fashionable celebrity of the upper-class dining table, Brussels sprouts, here in Australia. In cool districts it grows well, and has stayed on the menu ever since.
Brussels sprouts contain natural plant sugars, but they need heat to bring out the sweetness.
With an adult’s help, heat up a frying pan and add a ‘glug’ of olive oil and a little bit of butter. Add chopped bacon or pancetta pieces and fry them until they’re sizzling. Slice each Brussels sprout into 4-6 slices – pretty thin but thick enough to hold together.
Drop them into the bacon-oil mix and stir-fry for a few minutes, until they’re no longer crunchy and slightly browned around the edges (taste one to see!)
Sprinkle with chopped parsley, cook one more minute, and serve.