Brussels sprouts tips and tempting winter recipes!

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December is in full swing. And that means a positive abundance of sprouts to enjoy!

Don’t just save them for Xmas day. Nutritious, hearty and flavoursome, sprouts are the perfect seasonal food to play with.

Let our tips and tempting recipes inspire you to enjoy this humble winter veg…

Did you know?

When choosing, opt for stalks! They’re not just for show – sprouts will actually stay fresher, plumper and more flavoursome for longer. You’ll really taste the difference!

Buying off the stalk? No problem!

Choose bright, firm and heavy sprouts – this indicates freshness and quality. (But our off-the-stalk sprouts are picked and delivered within a matter of hours – so this is always guaranteed!)

When it comes to flavour nuances? The smaller the sprout, the sweeter. Larger sprouts have a much more cabbage-like taste.

But – regardless of size – winter sprouts are the best! While available from early autumn, sprouts develop a sweeter flavour after the first frost. (And judging by this December, our Xmas sprouts are going to be positively delicious…)

3 Tempting Ways to Enjoy Sprouts This December

1.  Nourishing Pomegranate-Sprouts Salad

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Yes, you can – and positively must – eat sprouts raw for a delicate, fresh winter salad.

With an intensely flavoursome orange-tahini sauce, this salad is positively bursting with texture, flavour and wholesome winter goodness to keep those colds at bay!

Recipe:

For the salad:
1 bowlful of finely shredded washed and prepped brussels sprouts.
1 pomegranate, arils removed.

For the sauce:
1/2 cup of tahini
1 tbsp white miso
1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
1/2 tbsp raw Sussex honey
1 orange, juiced
1 clove of garlic 
1 splash of Sussex cider vinegar
Splash water if needed

Parlsey to serve

Method:

Prep your pomegranate and brussels and combine in a salad bowl.

In a blender, place the sauce ingredients and blitz, adding water if necessary to create a thinner consistency (but not too thin and this will dilute flavour!)

Once blended, combine the two and serve with fresh parsley to garnish.

2. Comforting Creamy Brussels Gratin

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This is just the recipe to enjoy after a blustering Sussex day in the ice and sleet.

Hearty winter veg and intensely flavoursome Sussex blue cheese make this the ultimate winter comfort dish.

Recipe:

You’ll need:
500g Sussex waxy potatoes, cubed to sprout size
500g brussels sprouts, prepped and halved
200g Sussex blue cheese 
150ml Sussex double cream
200ml Sussex creamy milk
50g ground almonds
1/2 tbsp ground black pepper
A few springs of fresh thyme, stems removed
1 small clove crushed garlic

Method:

Parboil the potatoes for 6 minutes, throwing the sprouts in at the last minute to blanch.

Meanwhile, combine the cream, milk, almonds, seasonings and blue cheese (crumbled). Drain the potatoes and brussels and spread in a wide ovenproof dish. Cover with the sauce and combine evenly.

Bake for 30-40 minutes in the oven at 180c.

Once cooked to crisp, creamy perfection, serve and enjoy!

3.  Warming Winter Stew

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Mmm, the perfect hearty winter dish to feed friends and family, accompanied by Sussex wine, fresh crusty bread and creamy Sussex  butter.

So, light the fire, set the table – and get cooking!

You’ll need:

1 large red onion, diced
300g Sussex bacon
3 carrots, sliced into rounds
3 stalks of celery, sliced
500g brussels sprouts, prepped and quartered
3 cloves of garlic, crushed
A generous handful of fresh thyme, stems removed
A pinch of saffron
1/2 tbspn black pepper
1/2 tbspn cumin
2 bay leaves
2-3 cups fresh stock
1-2 cans of white beans, drained
A generous splash of Mesto olive oil

Method:

Cook the bacon until crispy, for at least 10 minutes. Set aside. Once cooled, slice ready to add to the stew.

In a large pan, heat the oil and sautee the onion, garlic and spices until the onion starts to soften. Add in the carrots and celery and continue to cook to tenderise the veg.

Add the brussels, bay leaf and stock and simmer until the brussels are tender (but not overcooked) and flavours well-combined.

Finally, add the beans and bacon. Serve garnished with parsley and enjoy with good company!

Feeling inspired?

Get your Brussels HERE. Or, shop for Christmas food now for local delivery 19th, 21st and 23rd December!


Image 1: Brussels sprouts by Niall Kennedy/Flickr (CC) 
Image 2: Kale and brussels sprouts salad by Meg Schwartz/ Flickr (CC)
Image 3: Blue cheese by Susie Wyshak/Flickr (CC)
Image 4: Fresh thyme by Cookbookman17/ Flickr (CC)

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Brussels sprouts tips and tempting winter recipes!

Transform your Xmas desserts 3 ways with Sussex walnut liqueur…

Need to warm up in this cold, cold weather?

Or, simply, dreaming of decadent Xmas desserts as the days creep closer through December?

With a seasonal Sussex take on Xmas treats, you can warm up and indulge your sweet tooth with our walnut liqueur desserts!

Stomach rumbling?

Read on!

1.  Affogato with a walnut liqueur kick.

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This Italian classic is perfect for those who want something to cut through the richness of festive food while still indulging in dessert.

A beautiful display of contrasts, affogato is, essentially, espresso and vanilla ice cream.

Want to take this dessert to a whole new level of heaven? Add a shot of walnut liqueur for the ultimate dark, sweet, creamy and aromatic indulgence.

We suggest using Edgcumbes coffee and Caroline’s Dairy ice cream for quality and reassurance than you’re supporting local, ethical food production.

Simply scoop vanilla ice cream into a coffee cup and pour over a shot of espresso and a shot of walnut liqueur.

2. Walnut liqueur laced chocolate torte.

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Bringing out this dessert will positively prompt a round of ‘Ooohs’ and ‘Aaahs’ – with good reason.

Dense chocolatey goodness with aromatic walnut liqueur for flavour and contrast to the richness –  the ultimate treat when entertaining.

The recipe:

450g chestnut puree
230g dark chocolate
eggs
125g butter
65g sugar
2 tablespoons walnut liqueur
Cream (as desired, to serve)
50g dark chocolate (shaved, to serve)

Preheat the oven to 180c. In a mixing bowl, whisk the egg whites until firm (but not quite meringue texture). Melt the dark chocolate over a bowl of boiling water.

Meanwhile, in a food processor, combine the butter, sugar and chestnut puree. Add in the egg yolks, liqueur and dark chocolate and combine.

Once the chocolate has melted, gradually fold through the whisked egg whites. Pour into a baking tin and cook for approx. 40 minutes in the oven. Allow to cool before enjoying with whipped cream and chocolate shavings (and possibly an extra shot of walnut liqueur)

Enjoy with friends and family around a candle lit table, wearing colourful paper crowns and sharing terrible jokes…

3. Fiery Xmas pudding!

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Brandy is all very well – but a splash of walnut liqueur over your Xmas pudding is an easy – and delicious – way to switch it up this Christmas.

Simply pour a good splash over your steamed pud and set fire!

Not only does this liven up the Christmas table – but imbues the pudding with mouth-watering flavour.

Serve with cream, and, possibly, another shot of liqueur…


 

Inspired? Let us know if you try any of these desserts – or if you have any divine walnut liqueur dessert recipes you’d like to share with us! (@finandfarm)

Get Sussex walnut liqueur HERE.

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Image 1: Affogato by jen/Flickr (CC)
Image 2: Dark chocolate torte by kylesteed/Flickr (CC) 
Image 3: Flaming Christmas Pudding by Ruth and Dave/Flickr (CC)

Transform your Xmas desserts 3 ways with Sussex walnut liqueur…

Our fool-proof guide to mouth-watering Xmas roast potatoes.

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Dreaming of Christmas roast potatoes?

You’re not alone.

Mains can be adapted. Sides can be experimented with. But, it’s simply not Christmas dinner without roasties at the table.

And everyone has an opinion on how to get those perfect fluffy-on-the-inside, crisp-on-the-outside roasties.

So, we thought we’d throw our two cents in and share our tips for mouth-watering Xmas potatoes…

1. Choose your potatoes wisely.

While all potatoes taste nice slathered in oil and roasted, Xmas potatoes have that special quality that results in the perfect roast spud.

We recommend Inca Bella or King Edwards to achieve this dreamy Christmas perfection.

2. Cut them right!

Very uneven shapes can leave some burnt (and it’s imperative that there’s enough to go around… several times….). You want nice, thick, chunky shapes that are satisfying to bite into.

Depending on their sizes, cutting medium potatoes into quarters and smaller ones in half will do a pretty decent job.

Oh, and peel. Always peel Xmas pots for the ultimate comfort factor!

3. Parboil, parboil, parboil!

A must for Xmas potatoes is to parboil them in salted water first for about ten minutes. This will ensure that gorgeous crisp exterior and pleasantly fluffy interior that we’ve been waiting weeks for…

The secret at this stage?

When drained, shake them up in the pan to create that extra crispy, batter-like texture when roasted.

4. Heat the oil.

Use some really beautiful quality oil for an extra dimension of deliciousness.  Good food is all about quality ingredients at every step – so it’s worth the investment if you want a feast to impress!

Pour some oil into a large baking tray (or two). This is not the time of year to skimp on quantity (we have the new year for that…) – so be generous!

Heat in a hot oven until piping. Once hot, throw in the potatoes and coat well (being careful not to splash hot oil on yourself!)

5. Add some flavour!

Rosemary sprigs, some cloves of garlic and a sprinkling of cracked black pepper can go a long way in livening up this comforting side.

And of course – season well with flaky sea salt for extra bursts of flavour.

6. Pour yourself some bubbly…

Really!

The next step in to bake for at least 45 minutes. Keep an eye on them – you don’ want to burn them! And, if you want a bit of extra flavour, halfway through the cooking time add some potatoes to your meat or veggie main roasting in the oven.

While they’re cooking, pour yourself a glass of sparkling wine (or even a splash of wintery walnut liqueur).

You’ve earned it!

Sit back, relax, and let the aroma of mouth-watering Christmas potatoes fill the house…


These are our tips for mouth-watering Christmas roasties. But everyone has their own secrets too roast potato perfection. What’re yours? Leave a comment on this post, on social media and don’t forget to tag us in your Christmas potato creations! (@finandfarm).

You can buy Inca Bella and King Edward potatoes on our website.

 

 

Or, if you want everything in a convenient box, we do regular and super Christmas veg boxes.

All to be delivered to your door in time for Christmas on the 19th, 21st and 23rd of December. Order before the 18th!


Image 1: Christmas Cooking by Stewart Black/Flickr (CC)

Our fool-proof guide to mouth-watering Xmas roast potatoes.

The Ultimate Sussex Spirit

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Are you looking for a heady, delicious, warming Christmas spirit? In search of a mouth-watering, unusual Xmas gift, perhaps?

Well…

This Christmas, at Fin and Farm, we have just the thing for you!

Limited edition Sussex walnut liqueur.

Why is it limited edition?

This liqueur is small-batch made – not industrial! There simply won’t be any more of this aromatic Sussex spirit until next winter.

So – get it while it’s here!

What makes it so special?

It’s small-batch made in the beauty of the Sussex downs, using young walnuts, spices and pure vodka. But with an ABV of 17%, you won’t feel knocked out after dinner. Perfect!

Giving this as a gift? Great! You won’t find this beauty in the supermarket, so 10/10 for original and thoughtful gift giving…

Best ways to enjoy?

You’ll want to try this spirit straight to appreciate the unique walnut aroma. But, there are a million ways to enjoy this amber-hued spirit…

  • Pair with creamy blue cheese like Brighton Blue or Molecomb Blue for a savoury accompaniment at the festive table.
  • Sweet tooth? Pour over ice cream or douse some Xmas pud for a more indulgent treat.
  • Celebrating with cocktails? Instead of Amaretto or Frangelico, or to give an Old Fashioned a twist, use walnut liqueur.
  • Need an after-dinner digestif? Splash into coffee for an amped up espresso…

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Get yours HERE.

The Ultimate Sussex Spirit

3 brilliant and unusual Sussex beers to gift this Xmas

Are you ready yet?

It’s only a matter of weeks until the big (festive) day.

And – let’s face it – some people can be pretty hard to buy for. (You know who I’m talking about…)

But – fortunately – food and drink are always well-received. For some people in particular, beer never fails.

This Christmas, if you’re going to buy beer as a present, don’t just go for the usual.

Here in Sussex, we’re home to some of the most passionate, ridiculously skilled, pioneering artisans in the UK.

In other words – Sussex beer is an absolute TREAT.

So give something that’s beautifully made, out of the ordinary, and downright delicious this Xmas…

What do we recommend?

1. Dark Star Espresso Beer

Not a gimmick – or like anything you’ve tasted before. This aromatic, surprisingly-not-sweet, espresso beer is the not-your-average-brew you’ve been searching for.

Brewed by Dark Star Brewery (beer aficionado friends started this company in the Evening Star pub in Brighton in the mid nineties!), this beer is expertly crafted with roasted barley malt, challenger hops, and infused with freshly ground aribica beans.

You’ll be getting a rich, black beer with a delicious complementary coffee aroma. And, as the bronze winner of the Campaign for Real Ale Champion Beer of Britain (London and South East Area), you know you’re getting something good.

So why is this such a great gift?

There’s nothing quite like it! Think beautiful, award-winning craft beer stepped up a level with quality, fresh coffee beans for a not-your-everyday brew.

Ideas for enjoyment?

Enjoy with pork, aged semi-hard cheeses or vanilla ice-cream… This dark, heady and aromatic beer is certainly versatile!

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2. Creme Brûlée  Beer

An alcoholic dessert in a glass, with all the frothy darkness of beer and sweet caramel goodness of creme brûlée …

Brewed with unfermentable lactose sugar, fresh vanilla beans and plenty of roasted malts to provide a sweet, smooth caramel concoction.

Whether your giftee is a sweet tooth, an adventurous soul, or simply appreciates a good craft beer, this creme brûlée brew will satisfy.

Why does it make such a great gift?

You won’t find this anywhere else! And, after all, the perfect gift is a blend of practical (a good beer to kick back with) and frivolous (creme brûlée!). This beer ticks both those boxes…

Ideas for enjoyment?

Use as a float for vanilla bean ice cream, or pair with flambeed bananas and smooth custard…

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3. Dark Star Revelation

This wonderful, hoppy APA provides a quality – yet less ‘out there’ – brew to complement the more unusual beers. With citrus-y notes and a brilliant golden hue, Revelation is an all-round pleaser.

A blend of Warrior, Cascade, Columbus, Crystal and Chinook hops by the sack full, this brew is then dry hopped during conditioning using the Dark Star ‘Hoptimizer’ (industrial sized hookah) to imbue a unique taste.

Why does it make such a great gift?

It won’t fail to delight. Tasty, refreshing and relaxing – just the thing to unwind with over the holiday season. But, unusual enough that you won’t find it in conventional shops!

Idea for enjoyment?

Pair with meat, medium bodied cheese or a tart, fruity dessert.

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Want to search more Sussex craft beers? Check out our entire Sussex range HERE.

3 brilliant and unusual Sussex beers to gift this Xmas