Wednesday, 18 April 2012

B is for Broccoli - purple sprouting of course

My purple sprouting broccoli is still pumping out, must be all the rain we are having. And this year or rather next years plants have germinated, yeah. The packet of seeds from Wilco only cost 54p, so no excuses not to grow it. Find a patch and plant out in June, ready the following year in March, April and May. Gardening requires some degree of patience!

After a fairly sparse couple of months on the leafy veg front, the start of the purple sprouting broccoli season marks a welcome addition to the winter vegetable palate. Simply steamed or boiled, it partners almost any fish or meat dish. I eat with Sunday lunch, something to look forward to.

Purple sprouting broccoli was initially cultivated by the Romans. Broccoli has been grown in the UK since the early 18th century, although the purple sprouting variety has only risen to prominence in the last 30 years.

Broccoli is a cruciferous plant, in the same family as the cabbage, and is closely related to the cauliflower.

Cruciferous foods are now hailed as having a number of important health benefits. Purple sprouting broccoli contains the phytochemical sulphoraphane (thought to help prevent cancer) and may provide resistance against heart disease, osteoporosis and diabetes. It is packed with vitamin C and is a good source of caretenoids, iron, folic acid, calcium, fibre and vitamin A.

All the information has been taken from eat the seasons web site


Jo said...

I love purple sprouting broccoli but my plants are now on the compost heap. They started producing early, last year in fact, and ran out of steam.

eight by six said...

wow that was early. Mine do have a lot of leaves but still plenty of lovely purple shoots coming through. This year I'm looking forward to planting them again but this time from the ones I've sown from seed. Hows the weather where you are? Kent has a house pipe ban yet its been raining almost non stop for days now!

Annie @ knitsofacto said...

Yum, I love this stuff. Made a dish combining it with red cabbage and onions at the weekend. Add some nutmeg, butter and a sploosh of sour cream ... heaven on a plate!

Jo said...

Yes, we've had the rain too, Amanda. I didn't think it was ever going to stop. It even woke me through the night as it was pelting against the window. It's a much brighter start to the day today, but I don't think we'll see the day out without some rain.

eight by six said...

Annie - that sounds delish especially the sour cream

Jo - we had more rain here today and more to come. It's so cold so I am knitting a jumper!

Crafty Helen said...

Thanks for your kind comment. I will stop by (and probably ask for lots of advice), as have just taken on an allotment! xx

eight by six said...

Helen - I forgot to say on your blog that I thought about you and wondered how you were. So pleased to see your back in blogger land and looking forward to reading more about your progress with your skirt x

Needles, Beads and Threads said...

I'm a broccoli lover too, and I mak a lovley broccoli and mushroom quiche, you should try it.