Two weeks ago we introduced you to Mina Holland, deputy editor at Guardian Feast magazine, writer, author and eater, as she showed us around her beautiful home and wrote a special guest blog for us. To get into the festive spirit, she’s written a follow up piece which shares a favourite recipe of hers with us for the Christmas table. Without further ado, back to Mina ...
Sprouts are vital on the Christmas table. I'm happy with them in any form as long as they aren't plain boiled – such a missed opportunity when these particular mini cabbages are such sponges for flavour, and a seasonal treat. In previous years, I've variously roasted sprouts with sriracha or made a crumble with an anchovy-laced roux. But, this year, I'm applying the flavours from one of my staple roast lunch sides – Savoy cabbage with caraway seeds and butter, originally published in my book, Mamma: Reflections On The Food That Makes Us (Orion, 2017). Not only is it really easy and fabulously good (I've long held that caraway seeds are under-appreciated), but it doesn't require the oven at Christmas Day rush hour. Happy Christmas to you all!
Brussels sprouts with caraway seed and butter
Serves 4-6, as a side
50g salted butter, plus extra, to serve
1 white or yellow onion, finely chopped
2 tsp caraway seeds
1kg Brussels sprouts, trimmed, peeled and halved
Salt and black pepper
Lemon juice (optional), to serve
Melt the butter in a heavy-based saucepan over a low to medium heat. Add the onion and caraway seeds and gently cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally. Raise the heat slightly, add the sprouts and sweat them in the spiced butter for about five to seven minutes, or until they start to take on a golden colour, becoming a little crisp at the edges.
Add 200ml of water, cover, raise the heat slightly and cook for five minutes before checking, stirring and, if necessary, covering again, depending on how cooked you like your sprouts. I like them to hold their shape but yield easily to the bite. Season with salt and black pepper – a generous pinch and grind should do it, and serve immediately with an extra knob of butter and a squeeze of lemon, if you like.
Many thanks to the lovely Mina, we can't wait to try this dish out over the festive period. I hope you've enjoyed this two part series getting to know Mina as much as we have, and are starting to get into the Christmas spirit and hopefully a little rest too.