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!!)
Now go eat your veggies!