Nigel Slater comes to Supper: A Rich Dish of Sprouts and Cheese for a Very Cold Night

Nigel Slater comes to Supper: A Rich Dish of Sprouts and Cheese for a Very Cold Night

Nigel Slater comes to Supper: A Rich Dish of Sprouts and Cheese for a Very Cold Night

Nigel Slater comes to Supper:

A Rich Dish of Sprouts and Cheese for a Very Cold Night

A Rich Dish of Sprouts and Cheese for a Very Cold Night

A Rich Dish of Sprouts and Cheese for a Very Cold Night

It was a very cold night last week – the wind howled and moaned, and frisky little drafts kept tickling my neck originating from the door to the pantry, which creaks in an annoying way when it’s windy and blows cold air into the toasty warmth of the room. The fire was lit and it was time to sit down with a selection of cookbooks, to peruse and choose in peace…….with a cup of tea and a slice of bun, well, a piece of cake as it happens. Before I settled down for a long winter read,  I remembered dashing Dom from Belleau Kitchen’s latest challenge for his intriguing and fun Random Recipes event; select a book at random that was given as a Christmas gift last year, and then, at random, choose a page  – then make the “random recipe” on that page. I receive lots of books at Christmas, and it has to be said that most of them are cookbooks; last year I was lucky enough to become the proud owner of six shiny new books, ranging from a WI Preserves book to Nigel Slater’s Tender (volume 1) as well as an Italian cookbook, a Bertinet book on bread and a River Cottage culinary delight too. I placed them in a pile, attributed numbers to them, then asked my husband to pick a number – it was number 5, which was Tender: Volume I, A cook and his vegetable patch……..and a GREAT pick as it is one of my favourite books. But, when I asked him to pick a page, 119, there were no recipes on that page, just a beautiful frosty picture of a sprout plant!

Tender: Volume I, A cook and his vegetable patch

Tender: Volume I, A cook and his vegetable patch – Page 119

Undeterred I flicked over to the next page, all about sprouts, all very helpful and interesting too, as the whole book is to a cook and keen gardener such as myself; the next page revealed sprout varieties……and it wasn’t until I hit page 126 that a recipe was revealed…….although I had read the chapter with interest, making mental notes as I entered the world of this most divisive of vegetables, the Brussels Sprout. The world is split into two camps, those who love this pretty green mini cabbage and those who loath it – it’s a Marmite moment. I am in the sprout lover camp, and look forward with anticipation when they come into season. However, we had just attended a friend’s “Pre-Christmas Party and Dinner” the night before, where I had been a gluttonous sprout scoffer, and the thought of eating more so soon wasn’t ringing many Christmas bells…… a manner of speaking. But, Nigel saved the day, as he often does, the recipe revealed to me on page 126 was a perfect little dish of not just sprouts, but was a woolly blanket of a  recipe where the humble green vegetable is swathed in cream, bathed in cheese, doused with mustard before being baked au gratin, in the style of Pommes Dauphinoise, it was a winter warmer of immense proportions.

 A Rich Dish of Sprouts and Cheese for a Very Cold Night

A Rich Dish of Sprouts and Cheese for a Very Cold Night

It was a rich dish indeed and was devoured with crusty bread for a simple supper, in the manner of Nigel Slater’s TV programme of the same name. I didn’t have the suggested blue cheese to hand, Stichelton Blue, in fact, rather distressingly I found the cupboard bereft of any blue cheese, so, I used some lovely Sage Derby instead. Cream was also absent, so Crème Fraîche took its place, but the rest of the recipe was made as suggested by Nigel. We ate this rich little dish, on a VERY cold evening, by a roaring fire with hunks of crusty bread and glass of red wine…… was quite delicious and very filling. Nigel suggests that this would make a wonderful accompaniment, I agree, but it also made a very comforting and tasty supper just by itself. The recipe for this delectable recipe is of course in Tender, (Volume 1) on page 126, alternatively, you can find the recipe here: Sprouts with Stichelton and mustard where Nigel says…..”Any blue cheese will melt into the sauce for these sprouts, but I have been using a lot of Stichelton recently – a relatively new cheese. A particularly satisfying side dish for boiled gammon. Serves 4 as an accompaniment”……..

A Rich Dish of Sprouts and Cheese for a Very Cold Night

A Rich Dish of Sprouts and Cheese for a Very Cold Night

DO try this recipe, it is simply wonderful, and as the title suggests – it is indeed a very good recipe for a very cold night and would make a great dish to serve post-Christmas dinner with the surfeit of sprouts that you will probably have kicking around! That’s all for now, I will see you later……and try not to shop til’ you drop. I hope you like my entry into Random Recipes Dom, and a big thanks to Nigel who came for supper the other night by way of his wonderful book Tender, Volume 1. Karen

Random Recipes #23 - December

Nigel Slater comes to Supper: A Rich Dish of Sprouts and Cheese for a Very Cold Night

Nigel Slater comes to Supper: A Rich Dish of Sprouts and Cheese for a Very Cold Night

Are you a sprout lover or a sprout hater? 


  1. says

    Sprout lover! I love all things cabbage-y. I have been enjoying all your posts lately Karen but haven’t commented. Been under the weather so have spent very little time on the blogosphere.

    Hope you have a great holiday season.

    Nazneen xx

    • says

      Thanks Nazneen… is ALWAYS nice to see you whenever you have time to visit me! I hope that you are feeling a little brighter, do try to stay upbeat and if you need to talk, just send me an email! Have a wonderful holiday season too…..Karen

  2. says

    Oh dear…I fear I am a sprout hater!! But funnily enough, I have this recipe cut out and saved from a magazine to try as it is one of the only spout recipes that has ever appealed to me. You have reminded me of this fact and perhaps it is time I gave them another shot! My poor husband adores them and has lived the last 10 years bereft of sprout in his life. If I knocked this up he would be over the moon so perhaps as a Christmas treat for him, I shall try it :)

    • says

      You MAY just like this one then Anneli! I suspect that any chou would work well baked this way, a sort of deconstructed chou farci with cheese and no meat. So go on, make these for your poor sprout-less husband for Christmas! :-) Karen

  3. says

    That growling sound you heard was my tummy rumbling! I have tried this from Tender, a must-have cook book for everyone’s shelves if there ever was one. I love sprouts in all their incarnations but this one is an absolute winner!

    Nigel is also on my list of Fantasy Dinner party guests, although I suspect I would just like him to myself so we can just talk food!

    • says

      You and me both Rachel…..Nigel would be TOP of my dinner party or simple supper guest list too; his style reflects how I like to cook and, I love each and every one of his recipes. Thanks Rachel, Karen

  4. says

    what a great sprout dish and how apt for this time of year, it’s as though it was all meant to be!… as you know I adore Nigel Slater and this book is a stunner… I love the pictures too, really wonderful. I love your pictures too, they make you want to reach right in to the screen and scoop up a spoonful!… thanks so much for entering darling Karen, I love it when you’re part of the team x

    • says

      Thanks Dom! I was on to a winner when number 5 came up, as Tender Volume 1 contains lots of winter veggies, although I did have to leaf through (sorry for the pun) for several pages until I got to a recipe! ALWAYS happy to be part of RR, as you know! :-) Karen

  5. Sally lea says

    This looks utterly divine, can’t wait to make it, but will have to wait until the sprout haters return to their digs in January.

  6. says

    Could do with this dish today – sounds just right for cheering up a dull day! Unfortunately there are no sprouts or blue cheese in the house, so it will have to wait until I’ve been to the market tomorrow.

  7. says

    Ciao Karen, this is a such great coincidence also my weekly post is all about Brussels sprouts….because I LOVE THEM!!! This recipe sounds delicious, creamy and cheesy. The perfect treat for these cold nights.

  8. says

    I quite like sprouts but don’t cook them much as the rest of the family isn’t keen – but we all like potatoes dauphinoise so I think I’ll give this one a go. I’ve had Tender on my kitchen bookshelf since it came out but have never fully explored all the recipes so thanks for bringing this one to my attention! Just in time for Christmas too!

  9. says

    it sounds like you made a very cold night very cosy indeed courtesy of Mr Slater. Adore him and would quite possibly have cheated in your position if I had picked any other number. Shh. Don’t tell anyone! Btw, I like your cheese suggestion better as sage goes so well with sprouts (i did a sauteed brussels with crispy sage crumbs last week on the blog), and I always use creme fraiche instead of cream in recipes as I prefer then sharper taste. Lovely, Miss Karen. Have a wonderful Christmas x

    • says

      Thanks so much Kellie, I also thought that my sage Derby cheese was a winner with the sprouts in this recipe too…….you have a wonderful Christmas and see you in the New Year at FBC again! Karen

  10. says

    Now that’s what I call a warming and seasonal dish. Lovely. I agree that most people either love or hate sprouts but actually I’m somewhere in the middle. I certainly don’t hate them but I wouldn’t say they’re one of my favourite vegetables either. In the right dish, though, they can be delicious and I’m sure that’s the case here. I’m not so sure that I’d like Mr Slater to come round for supper, though. He seems to spend a lot of time rummaging around in other peoples’ fridges and my fridge is not in a neat and tidy state.

  11. says

    I love sprouts, maybe because they were rare in Russia when I was a kid. We had them in veg soup mixes, freezer bags imported from Poland, and for me they were something exotic. I still love them but don’t cook very often, as my guys don’t eat them.

  12. MrsNumbles says

    I’ve fallen in love with all things Nigel only recently(only been in the UK for a year….my first crush was Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall), and now this?! *swoon* Thanks for this recipe – I think I’m going to try and fit this in on Christmas Day!

  13. says

    I saw this dish the other day and have been obsessed about it ever since. I adore sprouts so will definitely be trying this dish out very soon!

  14. says

    Sprouts are amazing! I LOVE them. I’m having a moment of sage derby nostalgia too – it was my favourite cheese by far, back in the days when I could still eat dairy – sob! Ah well – good to know you enjoyed it too :o)

  15. Lila B taylor says

    Now i’m not a fan of Nigel Slaters recipes usually, but this has definitely turned my head-I adore sprouts so this is a fab recipe for me!

  16. Lynn Savage says

    I love sprouts and they’re one of the few vegetables that my kids will happily eat (yeah strange I know), will definately be trying these

  17. Alan C says

    This looks like an interesting use of sprouts. The trouble is that you can’t use them for bubble & squeak or hash the day after

  18. Fiona Matters says

    Sounds lovely – sprouts and cheese a match made in heaven! Now just have to convince the other half!

  19. Fiona Harris says

    Hmm I adore spouts!! wish I had spotted this receipe a little sooner..although im sure its not too late to still give this a go! what a lovely warming and satisfying dish for supper on a cold febuary night this would be,thankyou

  20. Tracy Nixon says

    Now this is up my street! I love sprouts and cheese! Actually a few weeks ago when I came to make the Sunday dinner, I realised I only had a tiny bit of cauliflower left to make my specialty cauliflower in a cheese sauce – so to space it out, I added sprouts in with the cauliflower to make a cauliflower and sprout in a cheese sauce! The kids loved it – seems they prefer sprouts when they have a cheese sauce on – anything to get them to eat their greens! I shall try this recipe!

  21. Lisa Pope says

    I’ve pinned this, it’s definately one I want to try. I currently have a sprouts at the allotment ( only those & kale at this time of year …roll on purple sprouting broccoli which should be ready in 2 weeks)

  22. Alison Wakefield says

    OMG i’m in heaven wow I never thought of doing that but guess what we are having for tea tonight lol

  23. Meryl Rees says

    That sounds sooo wrong but looks soooo fabulous, I’m going to try this but I bet the kids will leave it all for me :)

  24. deborah godbolt says

    i would never of thought of using brussels as the main part of a meal but you have convinced me i will give this dish a try ty

  25. Ali Thorpe says

    I’m a sprout lover it’s great to see recipes using them in different ways that just with a roast dinner. This looks delicious.

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