No trees today, just sprouts. For some reason, these vegetables have become an essential part of the traditional Christmas dinner in the UK and Ireland. They look like tiny cabbages, and the taste divides families. (My husband is a fan, I’m not.)
The Christmas supplies have reached London. These sprouts from Perry Court Farm in Kent were on sale yesterday at the Marylebone Farmers’ Market.
The stallholder suggested that reluctant sprout-eaters like me should try sprout tops, those leafy greens at the top of the stalk. The Guardian newspaper agrees: click here to read their article from December 2013.
Not everyone wants to buy the complete stalk, so it’s more usual to see individual loose sprouts on sale. When the sprouts are harvested, the bare stalks are left behind in the field. I captured this image of a sprout field in March 2015 for my other website, Townlands of Ulster.
Now it’s over to you. I would love to hear what my readers think of Brussels sprouts, so I’m launching a Sprout Poll. Please vote!
RESULTS UPDATE ON 27 DECEMBER 2015
Since I launched the Sprout Poll, 25 people have voted, and it is a landslide victory for sprouts.
Adding together the simple yes votes, with the people who love sprouts but eat something else at Christmas, and the people who love sprouts but don’t celebrate Christmas, and the people who wrote in special answers like “I love sprouts but they won’t be part of a Christmas dinner in Finland/India/Brisbane”, we have a total of 16 people supporting the funny green vegetables.
The only person who seems to be on my side in this debate is my friend’s 10-year-old son Rhys, who wrote a poem accusing sprouts of being “slimy and bumpy…bitter, dark and mucky”. You can read the full poem in the comments below.