When I was a little boy my mom would boil Brussels sprouts for dinner. They were always an ugly, dark, depleted-looking green monstrosity on my plate. I hated Brussels spouts with a passion, like only a little boy can. They tasted bitter and the more over-cooked they were, the more I despised them. They were my #2 least favourite vegetable with asparagus being the #1 Oh-my-God-I’m-gonna-hurl vegetable. Seriously, asparagus made me gag!
Thankfully I’ve long since learned how to properly cook both vegetables. It’s through the magic of cooking these veggies correctly that you can win over even the longest running Brussels spouts hater.
Roasted Brussels sprouts are now my favourite way to cook this super nutritious vegetable. There are many ways to add flavour while roasting them. My key ingredients are balsamic vinegar, a citrus like lemon, lime, or orange, and walnuts or pecans. I also prefer to roast them over boiling, since roasting will preserve more nutrients and the flavour simply can’t be beat.
Many years ago I was finally taught how to properly boil them by a chef friend of mine. The reason many people over-cook Brussels spouts is because they don’t score the stem (see my pictures, below). If you use a sharp paring knife to make a cross-cut deep enough into the core, the spouts will cook evenly all the way through — nor will you need to cook them as long. When you boil sprouts too long they turn bitter and unpleasant to the palette.
You can enjoy these Roasted Brussels Sprouts with any of the meat meals that I’ve posted as part of my How to Cook Meals in Bulk Series. For example,
Roasted Brussels Sprouts
- 3 lbs Brussels Sprouts
- 1/4 cup Walnuts
- 1/4 cup Dried Cranberries
- 1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
- 1/4 cup Filtered water
- Fresh Ground Pepper to taste
- 1/4 tsp Celtic Sea Salt or to taste
- 1 medium Tangerine Orange
Pre-heat the oven to 350°F.
Using a sharp knife cut off a small amount of the core as shown in the picture. Only discard outside leaves if they don't look fresh. Cut each sprout in half along the core.
Wash the Brussels sprouts and any loose leaves in a large colander with cold, running water. Drain well and put the sprouts into a large baking pan, like a Pyrex glass pan, a roasting pan, or baking sheet.
Peel the tangerine, separate the segments, and cut each one in half. Remove any seeds. Add the tangerine and the juice on the cutting board to the spouts.
Add the remaining ingredients to the pan and toss everything together to evenly distribute all of the ingredients.
Place the pan in the oven (middle or top rack) and cook for 40-60 minutes.
Stir the Brussels spouts every 15 minutes. Add a tablespoon or more of water if the liquid evaporates to prevent sticking or burning. Total cooking time will depend on the size of the spouts and how well you want them cooked. They are cooked when you can easily insert a fork into the sprout. Avoid over cooking as this will cause them to turn bitter.