With the holiday season approaching I have to ask that age old question. Are you a sprout lover or a hater? I can categorically say that for as long as I can remember, sprouts have always been a favourite of mine and not that token Christmas Day veg. For my friend Serena on the other hand, this vegetable was not her favourite. She may not be a hater but she most certainly wasn’t a lover. I wish I had known this before I created this special dish in association with Love Cheese.
Serena was my dinner guest and this sprout dish was the highlight of the menu… or so I thought! Serena arrived and with excitement I explained that I had been sent some cheeses to try and create recipes from. Love Cheese had sent me a selection of cheeses to sample as part of their first annual Food Bloggers Cheese Challenge. The idea is that I create a dish picking one or more of the cheeses sent to me. The cheese choices sent to me by Harry, the owner were top notch.
Summerfields Alpine, produced by the Botton Creamery in North Yorkshire. Alastair and Kevin use traditional alpine methods, and use milk only produced on summer pastures. Close to Comte/Gruyere style, nutty and tangy with a semi-firm texture.
Hebridean Blue, produced by Isle of Mull Cheeses in Scotland. A hard Scottish blue cheese with a bold flavour. It has a nice saltiness and not to acidic. It crumbles and melts in the mouth.
The final cheese was Brie with Black Pepper. Produced by Godminster Cheese in Somerset. Godminster’s organic Brie is excellent by itself but the introduction of cracked black pepper is another level. The Brie is rolled in pepper so it subtly infused the cheese whilst not overpowering it.
Her face dropped when I said that my recipe for the competition had sprouts in it! I managed to talk her around when cheese was mentioned. Being a cheese lover like myself I could see that she was changing her mind slightly. I sensed a moment of slight intrigue from her.
My sprout dish is by no means your average sprout dish. Not boiled to a mush and stinking the house out like many memories of school dinners or grannies Sunday roast. Once cooked they take on the tang from the lemon zest and sumac, a slight warmth from the chilli and of course the cheesy goodness from the Summerfields Alpine. Serena politely spooned a few onto her plate and we tucked in to our meal. To her surprise (and mine) her face lit up when she took a bite. She even went in for seconds and proclaimed that I might have converted her from a hater to a lover. High praise indeed. Perhaps this dish will convert the haters in your life too? Maybe this is the sprout dish you should be making for your family and friends this holiday season? According to Serena it’s a “game changer”! You would be mad not to give it a go.
Disclaimer: I was kindly sent some cheeses by Love Cheese, York. All views are my own as always. I was not paid for this post.