Monday, December 23, 2013

Tender Roasted Brussels Sprouts


When I was younger, Brussels sprouts were not among my favorite vegetables.  They were mostly boiled whole until they were on the mushy side and their tightly wrapped green-yellow leaves began to turn slightly grayish.  And to get past the bitterness, I would often have to douse them with some kind of sauce, whether it be melted garlic butter, ranch, or mayo.  So, no, these "tiny cabbages" were not my favorite.

But as the theme of polar extremes seems to hold my life together, it really isn't that ironic that Brussels sprouts now sit comfortably among my very favorite vegetables.  Avoiding them like the plague for a good number of years, I rediscovered them in the last few years as they began to pop up on menus all over town as the vegetable of the moment.  From roasted, sautéed, to flash-fried, each time I would have them, I would honestly be taken aback at how delicious they were.  And soon I found myself happily craving them, looking forward to seeing them at the grocer or farmers' market.

It all comes down to preparation and taking care of the ingredients you are feeding to others or feeding to yourself.  And with today's recipe, using a simple take on honey mustard for the dressing, I hope to take this often misunderstood and misused ingredient to a sigh-inducing, happy place.


Sweet Mustard Roasted Brussels Sprouts
Gluten-Free & Vegan

Active Prep Time:  5 minutes
Inactive Prep Time:  none necessary
Cooking Time:  20-30 minutes
Yield:  four 1/2 cup servings

1 lb Brussels sprouts, trimmed, rinsed, and halved

1 tablespoon oil
1 tablespoon mustard
1 tablespoon coconut sugar
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon ginger, finely minced
1 teaspoon garlic, minced
ground cayenne, to taste (optional)

sea salt, to garnish

What you'll need:  large mixing bowl, whisk, large baking dish/pan, parchment paper

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2.  Rinse and trim Brussels sprouts, cutting off the tough bottom portion of the stem on each one and removing any discolored leaves.  Slice each one in half.
3.  In mixing bowl, combine remaining ingredients.  Whisk until loosely incorporated.  
4.  Add Brussels sprouts and toss to coat well.  They can be immediately roasted from here, but I prefer to allow the marinade/dressing to sit on the Brussels sprouts for roughly 10 minutes.
5.  Transfer to parchment paper lined baking dish/tray, making sure that it is large enough to arrange the Brussels sprouts so they are not crowded.  Roast in batches if needed.
6.  Roast for 20-30 minutes, turning them midway through.  I prefer to roast them flat side down first to ensure that the tougher center portion of each sprout cooks through, and then flip them onto their back.  
7.  When done to your satisfaction, remove from oven and finish with sea salt while still warm.

Brussels sprouts taking a bath.

Brussels sprouts getting dressed.

Ready to roast.

Slightly crisp & caramelized on the outside, tender on the inside.

As advertised, while the outermost leaves of each sprout may crisp or slightly char, this is by no means a "crispy Brussels sprouts" recipe.  The intention is for them to be cooked through without hammering them into mush.  They should still offer some resistance to the teeth - nice and tender.  And if you want them a little more towards the crispier side of the spectrum, you can up the temperature to 450 for the final 5-10 minutes or use a convection oven.

I hope you find joy in both making and sharing this easy recipe.  And I sincerely hope that the taste will  inspire those, who like me, had a bad first impression, to come back for seconds.

4 comments:

  1. The sweet mustard sauce sounds great with Brussels sprouts! I'm definitely a fan of little cabbages. Happy New Year!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Brussel Sprouts 4 life! We will be making tray-loads of these for Dad; when we're together again. Happy New year, kuya!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Absolutely - the more tiny cabbages, the better! Happy New Year, day!

      Delete

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