In the refrigerator was a piece of ham or bacon, wrapped tightly in plastic. It was my turn to cook. Also in the refrigerator’s vegetable drawer was a packet of already trimmed Brussels sprouts. I had learned before that sprouts went wonderfully in a stew. So, instead of soaking and then boiling the ham, before making a parsley sauce with the cooking water, I decided to cook the sprouts at the same time as the ham and thicken the sauce. The result was delicious and simple – just how I like recipes to be. Here’s how to do it.
HAM OR BACON WITH BRUSSELS SPROUTS
You will need:
A lump of ham or bacon
A stock cube
A little white wine
In an iron casserole that’s not too large for the meat, put your lump of ham or bacon in water and soak out most of the salt that will have been preserving it. Discard the water.
Put oil in the casserole and add chopped onion and garlic. Cook this through until the onion is transparent. Now add flour – say a heaped dessert spoon full. Stir this in. Add pepper but not salt (there should be enough in the meat). Then add a crumbled stock cube of some sort.
Place the meat on top of the onion mix and surround it with sprouts. Add water with a little white wine to almost cover.
Bring to the boil and cook this dish very slowly for about half an hour.
Extract the meat and carve it into slices. Cover these with the sprouts and their liquor. It really is as simple as that – and quite delicious.