Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Put This In Your Mouth

Brussel Sprouts: The Most Misunderstood Vegetable

Brussel Sprouts are delicious. They are little bite size cabbages that crunch in your mouth (if cooked right). I am sure that you heard a lot of awful things about them growing up, but don't be fooled by the bad reputation that they have. They are just so bad that they are awesome. They might even be too cool for you.

I once was fooled by the myth that brussel sprouts taste the inside of a trashcan until one day my friend made them for me. I remember thinking... great.... she made me this awesome dinner for my birthday, and I have already decided that I hate brussel sprouts without ever trying them. But, I'm open minded and I was newly vegan, so I was happy to try them. We were all sitting at the table, and I had my plate in front of me, grabbed the veggie with my fork, and I bit into my first brussel sprout. I instantly wanted more and I couldn't get over that it took me this long to give them a chance. She made me this recipe off of 101 cookbooks, and since then I have forever been buying, cooking, and loving brussel sprouts.

Why are brussel sprouts awesome? Well, besides tasting good, they have super healthy for you. They are high in fiber, help protect against cancer, and they are high in vitamin C which helps support immune function. They also help protect against rheumatic arthritis and birth defects. You can read more about it by clicking here.

There are a few ways to cook brussel sprouts, but I think they are best when they are cut into ribbons and pan fried to where they are a little crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. I do not recommend frozen brussel sprouts, they always end up too soft and watery.

How to prepare a brussel sprout for cooking:
Cut off the ends and peel away any loose or discolored leaves. Wash well. They can be cooked whole or halved, but for this recipe they are best sliced.

Here is my basic brussel sprout recipe....

You will need:
20 brussel sprouts, sliced
2 tablespoons olive oil
sea salt
1/2 Tbls sesame oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped

*In a bowl, coat the brussel sprouts in 1 Tbls Olive oil and some salt. Mix together
*Heat a large skillet to med heat with 1 Tbls olive oil. You do not want to make it too hot because you don't want the outside to cook too fast, but you do want to get the outside somewhat browned.
*Pour in the brussel sprouts until they are laid out flat on the surface.
*Cook for about 5 minutes, and then they should start to look brown on the bottom.
*Once you see that they have started to brown, add in the garlic, sesame oil, stir together, cover and cook for another minute.
*Pour in a bowl and you are done!

You can eat them just like this, or add them to a pasta, a rice dish, quinoa, couscous, soba noodles, or just add some other delicious veggies to the mix. Tonight I made these and mixed them in with kale, tofu, leeks, and rice noodles.

Roasting brussel sprouts is also a good option. Here is a Barefoot Contessa recipe for that. 
I have also been wanting to try a veganized version recipe from the Momofuku cookbook by David Chang for Roasted Brussel Sprouts

Let me know if you make them and how they turn out! Enjoy!

I love Brussel Sprouts in my mouth!

Brussels Sprouts on Foodista


Charlene said...

Totally agree that brussell sprouts are underrated! I didn't start eating/cooking them til a couple years ago, but they are great! Also I thought of you the other day...have you ever made kale chips? They are super easy and really tasty, so I think you'd like them! I just toss some kale in olive oil, salt & pepper, spread them out on a baking sheet and stick them in a 350 degree oven for 10 min or so (I just kept an eye on them to make sure they didn't burn). Good snack for a vegan such as yourself (or a non-vegan like me for that matter :))

Monica said...

Hey! Thanks for the comment. I have not made or tried kale chips, but I have heard the hype. I really should make them...maybe this week. I'll let you know what I think

Ren said...

I just stocked up on brussel sprouts! I will be cooking these this week! :) Oh, and I agree with Charlene... I am addicted to kale chips!!!!!!!!!!!!!