Saffron and pistachio butter Brussels sprouts

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Sumayya Usmani adds some Asian flavours to this traditional Christmas side dish by coating her Brussels sprouts in a delicious flavoured butter. The heady aroma of saffron and delicate nuttiness of pistachios are perfect with this sprout recipe, while a sprinkling of chilli flakes adds a little festive heat.

First published in 2015

Although there is no real tradition for having Brussels sprouts at Christmas in Pakistan, I still love to give these some South Asian flavour by combining them with a saffron and ground pistachio butter and sprinkling with a spicy hit of red chilli flakes. The result is an unusual blend of spices that set off the green, leafy flavour of sprouts well.

For a full festive feast, why not try serving these with Sumayya's Kashmiri-style lamb shank recipe, which is packed with flavour from rich spices, crunchy pistachios, almonds and seasonal cranberries.






Place the saffron threads into a bowl and add 1 tablespoon of hot water. Allow to stand and infuse while you grind the pistachios
Add the pistachios to a food processor and pulse until finely ground
Place the Brussels sprouts in a steamer and cook for 3–5 minutes, depending on their size, until cooked through and tender
Meanwhile, add the butter, ground pistachios and a pinch of salt to the bowl with the saffron water and mix until combined
Place a pan on a moderate heat and add the cooked sprouts. Scrape in the pistachio butter mixture and toss together for a few minutes so that it melts and coats the sprouts
Finish with a sprinkling of chilli flakes and another pinch of salt to season, then serve while hot
First published in 2015

Sumayya Usmani is a cookbook author, writer and cookery teacher who specialises in Pakistani cuisine.

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