Recipe guaranteed to convert sprout haters
Two days into our detox and it’s a bit of a struggle. January is a great month to cleanse ,but a lousy month too. All the excitement of Christmas is over, everyone is back to work, the weather is really dull and curling up on the sofa with a glass of wine is super-appealing!
There are also one million pine needles in my house driving up the irritation factor. Yep, the tree is still up and it’s in danger of being there until March. I almost took it down, but Chloe turned 10 at the weekend (a decade old! HOW DID THAT HAPPEN?) and so I turned it into a birthday tree.
She had a pyjama disco party with 15 10-year-old friends. Man that was noisy. Thank God the detox didn’t start until the morning after, otherwise I might not have survived! I was also nearly killed during the chocolate game. If you’ve never played it, then you really should, even if it gets a little hairy.
Here’s how you play: everyone sits in a large circle. In the middle of the circle you put a plate with a knife and fork and a large bar of chocolate, unwrapped. Here’s where I chip in as a nutritionist. The chocolate should be good quality and darkish (as dark as you can get away with around kids). It also needs to be marked into small squares — so Green & Black’s would be good for this, rather than Lindt. In the middle of the circle, you also put a pair of gloves, a scarf and a hat. With me so far? Ok, then everyone takes turns to roll a dice. You roll it, see what number you get and then pass it to the next person to roll. If you roll a six, you get to go into the centre of the circle and eat as much chocolate as you can. BUT it has to be eaten one piece at a time, with a knife and fork, and you have to put the gloves, hat and scarf on first. If someone else rolls a six in the meantime, you have to abandon what you are doing, take off any of the accessories you might have put on and let the other person take over.
There’s a danger you’ll get taken out by a frustrated 10-year-old with a plastic fork … but it’s fast and hilarious too. Just occasionally someone gets a run where they manage to eat a lot of chocolate with no sixes in sight, but it rarely happens. Both my kids managed it somehow, so now the detox is a family-wide affair!
The good news is that everyone is into cruciferous veg in our house. And Belle, who won’t eat cereal or toast, just happens to love cauliflower and Brussels sprouts. She loves Brussels best when they’re wrapped up with bacon, but I can live with that. I use an English cut bacon (waaaaaay lower in fat) from Waitrose (Supermart). It’s not organic, but they have a cool animal welfare policy which means that you’re eating good quality meat. I’ve given you the recipe for this below — it’s so good! Converts most sprout haters to lovers too!
Tip: chop your Brussels into quarters and let them rest for a few minutes before you cook them. Pop on over to Facebook and I will tell you why!
Brussels Sprouts with Bacon (for a crowd, serves 6)
6 rashers Waitrose English cut, unsmoked bacon; chopped
1 medium red onion; peeled and finely chopped
1.5lbs Brussels sprouts, peeled and chopped into quarters
6 small cloves of garlic; peeled, crushed and chopped
¾ cup vegetable or chicken stock
Sea salt and black pepper to taste
1. Brush a large non-stick skillet with light olive oil or coconut oil and heat to medium-high. Add the bacon and sauté for a few minutes, until the bacon begins to brown.
2. Add the red onion and Brussels sprouts; sauté four minutes. Add garlic, and sauté for four more minutes or until the garlic turns golden, stirring frequently. Add the stock, and bring to a boil. Cook for two minutes or until the broth mostly evaporates and the sprouts are crisp-tender, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; add salt and pepper to taste.
• The advice given in this article is not intended to replace medical advice, but to complement it. Always consult your GP if you have any health concerns. Catherine Burns is a fully qualified nutritional therapist trained by the Institute for Optimum Nutrition in the UK. Please note that she is not a registered dietitian. For details: www.natural.bm, 236-7511 or, Facebook, Natural Nutrition Bermuda