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Brussels sprouts the darling vegetable for Thanksgiving

  • Published Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2013, at 2:38 p.m.
  • Updated Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2013, at 5:50 a.m.

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Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Serves 4 to 6

1-1/2 pounds fresh Brussels sprouts

3 tablespoons garlic olive oil or extra-virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Trim off the bottom and any discolored leaves from Brussels sprouts. Cut in quarters. Place trimmed Brussels sprouts on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle oil over the sprouts and toss the sprouts to evenly distribute the oil. Season with salt and pepper.

Place on the center rack in preheated oven. Roast 20 to 30 minutes until tender and nicely browned, shaking pan every 5 to 7 minutes for even browning. Reduce heat if necessary to prevent burning. Taste and add more salt and pepper if desired.

It’s almost unbelievable – Brussels sprouts are climbing the ladder of most popular vegetables. You will see them touted as healthy and delicious in the media. Food magazines show them as the darling vegetable for Thanksgiving – with little mention of old staples like corn and green beans. Trendy restaurants feature Brussels sprouts boldly as the accompaniment on their upscale menus. Who would have thought this much maligned vegetable would suddenly be experiencing such glorified status?

Still, the mention of the cruciferous vegetable evokes strong responses. Some declare them delicious and love them. Others, just as adamant, are not fans of the miniature cabbage-like vegetable and are reluctant to try them. No doubt, they remember them as boiled and overcooked, tasteless with a strong sulfur odor.

You may have noticed fresh Brussels sprouts in the supermarket. They are a cold-weather vegetable and are at their peak in the fall. Most often you will find them in cellophane bags in the produce department, but occasionally you may see them still attached to the stalk. They are a powerhouse of nutrition and are easily prepared.

However, the ways of preparing them are varied. No longer are they boiled for hours, but are more likely to be roasted, fried, sauteed or perhaps sliced thinly and served raw in tasty salads.

If a vegetable lends itself to roasting, that is usually my preferred method. Once you prepare the vegetable and season it, the oven does the rest. You may need to occasionally shake the pan or toss the vegetables a time of two so they brown evenly. Once they are tender and slightly caramelized, they are good to go. Here’s a very easy recipe for Roasted Brussels Sprouts. If you like Brussels sprouts, you will enjoy this recipe. If you are not sure, give it a try – you may change your mind about this vegetable.

Bonnie Aeschliman is a certified culinary professional who owns Cooking at Bonnie’s Place in Wichita.

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