Last year I bought some frozen brussels sprouts that came in a plastic bag from the supermarket for Christmas dinner. I cooked some of them but the rest of them sat in my freezer practically the whole year. I started making the effort to use them up during National Zero Waste Week and literally only finished using them a couple of weeks ago.
Based on that I had decided not to buy brussels sprouts this year as they aren’t too popular with most of my family and I didn’t want another packet of them sitting in my freezer for another year. But then I saw the brussel sprouts still on the stalks in a local farm shop (Park Farm shop up in Falmer) and just had to adopt one – I’ve never seen them like that before. They cost £1.95 each, probably not the cheapest way to buy brussels sprouts, but definitely the most interesting!
I plan to cook some of the sprouts from the bottom of the stalk and use the rest of it as a centrepiece on Christmas Day. Then the rest of the sprouts will go in my fridge where I will not forget about them – I will use them up and they will be a distant memory by next Christmas! I think they will be nice chopped up in stir fries and I might even give brussels sprout soup a go if I have enough left…
In previous years I probably would have just chucked out any leftover sprouts after a few months of sitting in my freezer and I wouldn’t have been alone. Last year around Christmas time, apparently in the UK we threw out:
‘the equivalent of 2 million turkeys, 5m Christmas puddings and a truly shocking 74m mince pies, according to the Love Food Hate Waste campaign run by the government’s waste reduction advisory body, Wrap. To put it into context, that means we are binning nearly twice as many mince pies as retail giant Marks & Spencer sells every year (40m).’
Quote taken from: http://www.theguardian.com/environment/blog/2012/dec/20/obscene-amount-christmas-food-waste
I can only imagine how many brussels sprouts were chucked out!
Ever since I started challenge no. 4 a couple of days ago giving has been constantly on my mind. After leaving the shop I decided that I had to go back in and buy another one to give to someone else. On the way home I thought of various people I could give it to, but in the end I decided to give it to my next door neighbour. She put a Christmas card through our door a few days ago and I didn’t want her to be offended that I hadn’t put one through her door in return (I don’t send Christmas cards). I had been thinking about what I could do instead and decided this was it. I was a bit worried that she would think I was a bit odd turning up at her door with a brussels sprout plant, but she didn’t seem phased and seemed really pleased, so that was really nice – made my day!
I think these brussels sprouts on their stalk make the perfect eco-thrifty seasonal gift and am having to restrain myself from going and buying more of them to give away (although if I did that I might also need to provide a brussels sprouts recipe booklet so that none of them got wasted…).