Lollipop kale is the best new health food and one of the best kept secrets. This mythological-sounding vegetable is supposedly a cross between Brussels sprouts and Russian red kale leaves. Lollipop kale is similar in both taste and in the way it’s cooked to both vegetables. However, this culinary miracle is surprisingly elusive. Hugh Merwin, a contributing writer to grubstreet.com, was unable to find this vegetable for quite some time. At first, Merwin searched for the vegetable under the name “Flower Sprout”, which they were referred to originally by the British company Tozer Seeds that developed the hybrid. It was only upon hearing a rumor on Twitter that the vegetable was sold in California under the name Lollipop that Merwin finally located the hybrid.
Lollipop sprouts, along with collard greens, cauliflower, kale, and Brussels sprouts, belong to Brassica oleracea. Farmers have been playing with combinations and modifications of plants in the olercea family due to the appeal of the plants which belong to it. Additionally, lollipop sprouts are extremely versatile and have been used on all ends of the spectrum, from a garnish for pigs’ ears to crunchy lollipop chips. However, there’s a reason lollipop sprouts were so difficult for Merwin to locate. Lollipop sprouts are extremely difficult to grow and strategies must be put into motion before this delicious new veggie can be widely enjoyed in the American market.