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A bag of Brussels sprouts and some milk

First thought - Is it brussels (after the city and should it be capitalised) or is it brussel? I think the Americans think it should be brussel, as although Wix is an Israeli bit of software I think it inclines to the American world, and it just did a correction to brussels, but likes brussel. No I'm wrong - they actually just want me to capitalise it. So I shall.

I am, as a you know, a bit preoccupied with our Port Douglas holiday and have been clearing out my fridge. I am down to the real problems of milk, eggs and cream and a lesser problem of a bag of Brussels sprouts. I think it is probably too late for the eggs, and besides they could well still be Ok when we return. We're only going for ten days, and eggs seem to last a long time these days. So I think I'm going to risk it. There's not all that much cream so I'm not going to worry about that, and besides I can use that in tonight's meal of orrecchiette and broccoli. The milk though won't last and I do fear that it is just going to be thrown away. Which makes me feel very, very bad. Maybe I can put it in the compost?

In my head I had a plan for the Brussels sprouts. I thought I would do a sausage tray bake with them and maybe a bit of bacon too. I don't have any potatoes and hardly any bread either so I think I might just put in a few carrots too to bulk it out a little - or maybe some beans. Tray bakes are also good rubbish bins for flavourings you've got tucked away in the fridge. But milk? Maybe a little bit with some tomato sauce - yes that would be good as I need some for tonight's pasta but not a lot.

But before committing to this plan I thought I should check to see if anyone has anything better to offer. The result was varied. And I will elaborate in a moment, but the one thing I did not find was a tray bake with the aforesaid sausages. I'm not sure whether I should feel good about this - an original idea at last - or worried. Maybe it's such a bad idea that anyone who tried it abandoned it as a disaster.

Back to what I did find. There were lots of recipes for things to do with Brussels sprouts, some of which did involve milk, particularly gratins - but they were side dishes. Not mains. I mean this is going to be dinner. Probably, in fact the last dinner (on Friday) we have until Sunday because we arrive in Port Douglas early evening and by the time we get there it will be getting late, the children will be off to bed, and we won't have any supplies. A hamburger at the airport before we leave on Saturday is a possibility but no real dinner. So my Brussels sprouts dinner will have to see us through.

Things to note from all my browsing are that the things that people seem to put with these delicious little morsels - yes I like Brussels sprouts - are almonds, bacon, anchovies and chestnuts. Or sweeteners such as Maple syrup - and citrus.

The picture at the top of the page is one of a few in a post on a website called Healthy Fitness Meals which is called Chicken Alfredo Brussels sprouts. It's a kind of sautéed chicken dish really. What I found surprising about this was that the author maintains this is healthy because it is low in calories from the absence of the pasta which is usually in an Alfredo dish. She also implies that the Alfredo pasta dishes are unhealthy because of the creamy sauce. So I am a bit intrigued because there is a cup of milk and 1/4 cup of cheese in there too. Not good for the cholesterol surely? Tasty though. And truth to tell I haven't completely ruled this one out.

Still sticking with the milk - well not really - the recipe dictates cream - we have Nigel Slater's A rich dish of sprouts and cheese for a very cold night as described by the Lavender and Lovage website lady. It's really just a gratin, but at a pinch could pass as a main meal. I suppose it's really a kind of cauliflower cheese only with Brussels sprouts. It's supposed to use blue cheese but I guess you could use Cheddar if you wanted to. Maybe you could add some protein with some chopped ham as well? I wonder whether milk would be an adequate substitute for cream though. Maybe I would have to thicken it with flour or something. So a maybe for this one. No I think a maybe not. Another time perhaps.

Now this looks creamy (i.e. potentially milky) thought I. It's from Ottolenghi and it's Brussels sprouts risotto. But no milk. No cream either. Well of course not. It's risotto. The creaminess comes from the rice, and the wine and the vegetable stock. And the blue cheese. Obviously people think blue cheese is the thing for Brussels sprouts. Not me I'm afraid, so this one's a NO.

Finally in our own backyard, as it were, is this Chicken, orange and Brussels sprouts traybake from Woollies. Nice to see that you can traybake Brussels sprouts, and oranges are a good idea, but no milk or cream in sight. So maybe I'll just take the oranges from this and go with my original idea of a sausage traybake with perhaps a creamy (from the milk) tomato sauce to keep it all from burning. I'll try and remember to tell you if it works, although I shall hopefully be in Port Douglas before I get back to blogging, and blogging may be a bit intermittent whilst there.

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