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Plantidote of the Day 2011-09-29

twig's picture

brussels sprouts

Brassica oleracea

Brussels sprouts

A relative of cabbage, cauliflower and broccoli, Brussels sprouts are one of the unsung joys of the vegetable kingdom. First, growing in the garden, they look like something from a Dr. Seuss book. Second, they are absolutely delicious. Third, they're full of nutrients, including glucosinolates, the same compounds that made broccoli famous. Four, they have a fairly decent shelf life in the refrigerator, unlike some veggies.

The easiest way to cook Brussels sprouts is to roast them. First, pull off a few outer leaves and discard, then wash the sprouts, and cut in half (assuming they're the golf ball-sized ones, the tinier versions don't need to be cut up). If you've got the larger size ones, steam them for 1 minute or so in a microwave or pan with a small amount of boiling water. Then roast them in the oven (350 degrees for 30-40 minutes) in a little olive oil and whatever seasonings you like. After 15 or 20 minutes, move the sprouts around with a spatula so they roast evenly. You can tell when they're done, because a fork will slip in easily.

You can also roast Brussels sprouts with other vegetables, like peppers, onions, carrots, zucchini, potatoes or parsnips. Make a lot -- excellent leftovers!

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JoeInSF's picture
Submitted by JoeInSF on

But they're my favorite veggie, and roasting them is my favorite way to fix them.
A friend taught me that adding a bit of nutmeg can take out that funky taste that some people dislike for some inexplicable reason. Of course, for the non-Kosher, non-vegetarians, bits of bacon don't hurt either.

jjmtacoma's picture
Submitted by jjmtacoma on

Roasted brussels sprouts with a dressing of mayonaise, bacon bits and parmesean cheese. While you're at it, melt some butter on them too - why not!?

Seriously, brussels sprouts are awesome this way but you'd pretty much have to give up everything else you might want to eat for a week or something with all the calories.

twig's picture
Submitted by twig on

parmesan cheese? Sounds yummy! You could probably put that on cardboard and it would taste pretty good.

caseyOR's picture
Submitted by caseyOR on

They are great roasted, but I also like to saute them with shallots and bacon. It is so easy.

Wash the sprouts and quarter them. Pour a tiny bit of olive oil in a skillet; add bacon (I use 3 slices, but whatever you want) that has been cut into 2 inch pieces; brown the bacon just not too crispy; add the chopped shallots and cook until translucent but not brown; add some chopped garlic and cook but don't brown; add in the brussels sprouts, stir them around to coat with the bacon fat; sauté for about 10 minutes; If they need a bit more cooking, just add a bit of water, cover the skillet, and let cook until they reach your desired softness. Eat them up.


twig's picture
Submitted by twig on

I'm trying this tomorrow (but w/o bacon). Sounds great and doesn't require turning on the oven. Thanks!

Submitted by lambert on

I don't especially like them, but perhaps that is because I've never had them fresh.

caseyOR's picture
Submitted by caseyOR on

When I was growing up many of the vegetables that appeared on my family's table came courtesy of the Green Giant. We had frozen broccoli and brussels sprouts and carrots and peas and green beans. Often these veggies were paired with some sort of cheese-like sauce from the green Giant.

As a child I liked those brussels sprouts. As an adult I love fresh brussels sprouts.

twig's picture
Submitted by twig on

seems like they would not freeze well, but obviously they do. Maybe I'll try them and see how they compare to fresh. Actually, I just want the cheese sauce -- that stuff was addictive!