Wednesday, November 19, 2008

A New View of Brussels Sprouts

Do you have horrible childhood memories of your mother dishing up mushy, hot Brussels Sprouts onto your plate? You're not alone. Millions of children have nightmares about the smelly little balls of green simmering on the stove; how many hours did you sit at the table refusing to eat them, until you finally gagged them down, cold, just so you could leave them table? Does the photo make you shudder and have flashbacks? If so, read on! (And if you have never tried Brussels Sprouts, or even if you LIKE them as I do, here is a great recipe for you!)

These little gems are SO good for you! One cup of cooked Brussels Sprouts has 273% of your RDA of vitamin K, 161% of vitamin C, 23% of folate, 22% of vitamin A, 17% of manganese, 4 grams of fiber, as well as significant amounts of potassium, B6, tryptophan, B1, iron, phosphorus, magnesium, B2, E, copper and calcium. And if that isn't enough, they also contain 10% of your RDA of omega-3 fatty acids and they contain phytonutrients that fight cancer. Convinced yet? You get all this for just 60 calories.

Now that the Farmer's Market is closed, I have begin making my weekly trek to the produce section of the local Fred Meyer grocery store for my veggie haul. This week, a favorite find: Brussels Sprouts, absolutely fresh and still on the stalk they grew on!

My daughter said it was a Christmas tree. She is very tall for a 3.5 year old, so you can see how tall a Brussels Sprout stalk is. This very large, very heavy piece of produce cost me a grand total of $2.50.




Here it is, laid out on my stovetop:

What to do with this monstrosity? Well, first, you can wash it off. Just a rinse will do. Then pat it dry. Then comes the fun part. Take your thumbs and push each little ball until it snaps off and rolls across the counter, onto the floor, down the hall... or better yet, snap it onto a cookie sheet with a rim. Go down the stalk and snap all those little buggers right off. They make a lovely *crack* sound as you break them off; it's very therapeutic standing there snapping them off. Almost like popping bubble wrap. Anyway, once you get them off, just peel off any unfriendly-looking outer leaves (just the ones that look a bit brown or raggy) and then use a paring knife to trim off any long stems. Put them in a bowl.

The nice thing about fresh sprouts is you get such a nice size variety. Something for everyone, from the tiny balls at the top to the monster-big ones near the bottom. I cut them all in half, but the huge ones, I quarter. Toss 'em in a bit of olive oil, add black pepper and salt (coarse kosher salt is YUMMY) and spread on a baking sheet:



Roast in a 400 degree oven for about a half hour to 45 minutes, until they get browned and crispy. Stir or shake them around a bit a couple of times while they are cooking for even browning. I actually cooked mine on convection roast for 25 minutes. They should be tender when poked with a fork, but nice and browned on the outside (not black!!)




Plate 'em up, and enjoy! I put the extras in a baggie and keep them in the fridge for snacks. I enjoy them cold.

Now go eat your veggies!

40 comments:

ravengal said...

Call me strange, but I love brussels sprouts cooked in the crockpot until mushiness is achieved. Yum.

Excellent blog, by the way.

~TMcGee~ said...

I was raised weird. lol I have loved brussel sprouts, turnips, cabbage etc. from as early as I can remember. This recipe looks fantastic, Lyn. I don't have a local Farmer's Market so maybe I'll splurge and buy some over priced ones at the store. lol

Anonymous said...

I make this with fresh cauliflower and pam like olive oil spray, so no fat. OMG it is so good. Like I want to eat the whole head but I know I may be sorry later so I dont but I WANT TO> And I am glad the kids dont think they like it. lol

Scale Junkie said...

When I was growing up my Mom would cook them and pour Italian salad dressing over them and refrigerate for 24 hours and serve at parties as an appetizer, I still do this.

I have to agree that roasted is the best and I make them like this all of the time but I add fresh chopped garlic to the pan and when they come out of the oven I top them with crisp crumbled turkey bacon. I could seriously eat a huge bowl of them right now!

Pubsgal said...

I have ALWAYS been a brussels sprouts girl. (Yes, I'm strange.) During a presidential election one year my mom burned the brussels sprouts and the water in which they were cooking.

I usually steam them, but roasted is also a great way to enjoy them! Our local Italian restaurant serves them with a little pancetta and shaved romano cheese. Yum!!!

Anonymous said...

Looks scrumptious!

SunflowerDaisies said...

I've never actually had brussel sprouts before. My mom never bought them- I don't know if she even likes them- so I never had them growing up!

Bethany said...

Hmm, I'll just take your word for it! :D
~Bethany

Mrs. Jelly Belly said...

This is my favorite way to make brussel sprouts. They're delicious. But I must admit, I usually go the frozen rather than fresh route.

Just as good? Roasted cauliflower (like candy to me) or roasted asparagus. Good stuff!

Shelley said...

I bought my first Brussells Sprouts "tree" last night at my grocery store - what great timing! I've only steamed my sprouts on the stove, but I will definitely try roasting them with your recipe - they look so good!

Juice said...

Love the sprouts! I had them as a mid-morning snack the other day. Freaked my coworkers out.

I am Slimming aka MissMegan1974 said...

I love brussel sprouts and so does my 21 month old daughter. Infact we love all vegies. Thanks for sharing the pic with us too. I hate to say that I had no idea how they grew!

Jen said...

yum! Sounds so good! I had a big bowl of brussel sprouts last night actually, I love them! I have always called them "little cabbages" and I have always called broccoli "little trees"... I think as a kid I had an infatuation with little things... haha!

Katschi said...

I love the brussels sprouts...always have.

laine said...

Is it brussel sprout season? I love them! I love all the new veggies you try.

A great way to cook them is to steam them in a little orange juice and then let the juice simmer off so they start to brown in the pan. Maybe a dash of soy sauce.

Lauren said...

I microwave them till they are almost done and then saute them with olive oil and garlic in the pan ...love the crispy leaves that fall off when they are cooking . They are the dogs favorite veggie also.

Lyn said...

So happy to hear lots of you love Brussels sprouts!!

I have to tell you guys. When I really want something comforting, something that reminds me of being a kid, I make Brussels sprouts in cheese sauce. When I was a kid, Green Giant (I think) made them frozen and pre-packaged in the sauce and I LOVED it. I would eat gobs of them, and always had to have some baked crinkle cut french fries to dip in the cheese, too. Now I make my own cheese sauce from light Velveeta and skim milk. Still love to dip baked fries in the sauce, too :)

Fat Lazy Guy said...

Finally, someone who knows how to cook Brussels sprouts! I love them roasted.

Karyn said...

MMMMM....I love brussel sprouts. Never thought of baking them, though. That sounds delicious! Gonna try it, for sure.

I had no idea there was so much nutrition packed into those things! Thanks for the info.

Lynn Haraldson-Bering said...

GREAT post! I love BSes and I admit I toast them a little more than usual so they're kinda sorta blackish.....but then, I love burned toast, too :) I'm soooo buying BSes tomorrow. They make me bloat....TMI I know....but they're worth it.

Lynn Haraldson-Bering said...

Oh oh oh...I forgot. Rutabegas. Do you like them, too? I grew up with those. In soup, roasted, steamed with butter and pepper....just wondering if I'm the only one who recognizes them in the grocery store. They don't seem to sell many round these parts.

Lyn said...

Lynn~

I will put rutabegas on my list of foods to try! I will look for them next week. Thanks for the tip!

Pamela said...

I'll admit it. I've never been able to eat Brussels sprouts without wanting to gag - even as an adult. But I might have to give your recipe a try and give it another shot! Thanks for sharing!

Heather said...

mm I may be strange, but I love them!

Hanlie said...

I love them too! I usually steam them, but I'm definitely going to try the roasting.

jae said...

I LOVE brussel sprouts and make my family eat them even though they're not fans. Too bad! :)

I will try your recipe, I usually steam them and put just a tab of butter and a pinch of salt (the only veggie I will butter and salt) and YuM! ~j

MizFit said...

ok

OKAY.

Ive never eaten one.

*whew*

there. Ive admitted it.

now to rectify that situation :)

Anonymous said...

Oh I love this stuff; Rutabegas, Parsnips, Turnips, Brussel sprouts, all remind me of the holidays. You can grate Brussel Sprouts into a great slaw, too! Just like cabbage. I recently started eating celery root (celeric) which I love grated into a slaw-like salad. Oh boy, I'll be thinking about this until dinner tonight. I never bought a branch of brussel sprouts though because I live in the city without a car and I would have to haul it home on the subway. But I might just have to do it because they are so pretty, and I love popping bubble wrap!

Sarah said...

I never had brussels sprouts as a kid because my parents didn't eat them. But now that I have had them as an adult, I love them! Plus they are so good for you, I wish I'd had them as a kid, haha. Great post!

ben's mom shrinks said...

I LOVE brussel sprouts and those look delish.

Amber said...

I didn't know brussels sprouts grew on stalks like that. It looks so cool I want to run out and buy a stalk of sprouts now!

Sheri said...

I absolutely love the infamous little green brains. My daughter, not so much, but whenever we have them, she has t eat five whole ones. My mom sometimes covered them with homemade cheese sauce. One time I cooked them in a pot with some orange just and butter. They were good!

Question though, that stock they grow on, is it edible? Maybe like the broccoli stock?

Lisa said...

Roasted brussel sprouts are the best! I love them :-) I do mine exactly the same as you only I add a dash of balsalmic vinegar to mine as well. Yum!

Lyn said...

Sheri,

I dunno about the stalk! I should have tried that, just for fun. It is VERY tough though so it might be too woody. If anyone else has a stalk around, try cutting off the top half or so, peeling it, and steaming it until tender. Let us know if it is good!

Diana said...

I LOVE Brussels sprouts. I eat them at least four times a week, sometimes more. I never get tired of them.

I make them exactly like you do, roased with evoo, salt and pepper. Yummy! My favorite veggie.

Herbal Remedies Girl said...

I think that brussel sprouts are delicious. But I guess not everyone likes veggies. Thanks for all of the great ideas. Great Blog!

FatMom said...

I made just the exact thing LAST night! Oh, I loves me some roasted 'sprouts! Thank you for singing such a lovely ode to them!

WendyB said...

I'm amazed by that stalk!

Ames said...

Lyn, Just tried these tonight. DH and kids even ate them. Thanks

Bzybee said...

Hated them as a kid. Tried them last year and liked them. Cook my first ones a few nights ago and me and the kids loved them.