It is amazing what 20 years of trying new things, and a high heat roasting, can do for a formerly disliked vegetable.
Roasted Brussels Sprouts
Prep time: 10-15 minutes
Total time: 40 minutes
Special equipment: 2 rimmed half-sheet pans
- 2.5 lbs. Brussels sprouts
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Prep the sprouts by trimming the stem end and then cutting them in half. Remove any damaged or browned leaves.
- Arrange the oven racks so one is in the middle and one a the lower position. Preheat the oven to 475°F convection (or 450°F on a regular oven). Set out 2 half-sheet pans.
- Divide the Brussels sprouts between the two pans. Drizzle each pan with about 1 tablespoon of oil. Sprinkle each pan with a generous pinch of salt and about 20 grinds of pepper.
- Using your hands toss the sprouts with the oil and seasoning. Arrange the sprouts cut side down across the tray. Avoiding crowding the pan as it will limit browning if they are pressed up against one another.
- Place the pans in the oven and roast 20 minutes if using convection. If using a regular oven roast for 10 minutes then rotate the racks back to front and top to bottom in the oven, and roast for another 12-13 minutes.
- The roasted sprouts should be easily pierced by a fork and nicely browned. Cover loosely with foil until ready to serve.
If you get some very large sprouts you may wish to quarter them so they have a similar mass to the halved ones. Likewise if you have mostly large sprouts you may want to leave smaller ones whole.
I’m still not fond of these tiny cabbage-like vegetables when they are steamed, or god forbid, boiled.
When you are having Christmas Day dinner at your godmother’s, and she asks you to bring “a vegetable for 16”, you kind of freak out. At least I do. I decided on roasted Brussels sprouts because it’s a vegetable I’ve learned to enjoy as an adult. I added a some lucious fatty/salty bacon and a bit of sweet to make it a festive dish.
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Dried Cranberries
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes
- 2 lbs. Brussels Sprouts, stems trimmed and halved
- 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
- kosher salt and black pepper
- 1/2 lb. thick-cut bacon, cut into 1/4″ strips
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Line 2 rimmed baking pans with parchment paper.
- Toss sprouts with olive oil and sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Divide between the 2 baking pans. Bake for 20-25 minutes, rotating and swapping the position of the pans halfway through cooking.
- While the sprouts cook add the bacon and 1 cup of water to a non-stick skillet. Heat over medium heat until simmering. Cook for 5 minutes. Drain off any excess liquid/fat and crisp up the bacon to your desired doneness.
- The sprouts are ready when they can be easily pierced with a fork. Toss the sprouts, bacon and cranberries together. Transfer to a warmed serving dish and serve.
This reheats well, either in a low oven or in the microwave.
Our go-to cooking method for Brussels sprouts is to roast them. A couple of the cooking shows I watched over the last month though did a cooktop preparation of shredded sprouts. I was low on oven space one Saturday night and thought it was worth a try.
Shredded Brussels Sprouts
Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: 30 minutes
- 2 1/2 lbs. Brussels sprouts
- 3 Tbsp. unsalted butter
- 3 Tbsp. olive oil
- 2 tsp. kosher salt
- 1 tsp. black pepper
- 2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar or lemon juice
- Trim the bottom of your Brussels sprouts, removing any excess stem. Don’t worry if a leaf or two fall off.
- Fit a food processor with the slicing disk. Fill the feed tube of the processor with whole sprouts and processor. Repeat until you’ve shredded the lot. I had to empty the processor once due to the amount of sprouts I was cooking.
- Heat butter and olive oil in a dutch oven over medium heat until bubbly. Add the shredded sprouts, salt and pepper to the pot. Toss everything together in the pot and ignore for 4 minutes.
- Give the sprouts another good toss and once again ignore for 4 minutes.
- Toss once again and then taste. The sprouts should be tender; if not give them another minute or two.
- When cooked to your liking remove from the heat, add the balsamic vinegar and toss until well distributed.
This recipe can easily be halved. I basically doubled the quantities in recipes I found to come up with this.
Recipes consulted include this one from Alton Brown, one from epicurious.com, and one from Ina Garten.
My friend Sarah mentioned making this and I was fascinated by the concept. When I read the recipe she gave me it sounds good. Then I thought, this would be even better with bacon!. And low, it came to pass and it was pretty darn good with bacon.
Recipe under the cut
Everything is better with bacon!
A smaller group a friends joined us this week, just 8, including 2.5 year old G who doesn’t eat much. My fear of running out of food still compelled me to cook more meat than was needed. It will end up in a stew tomorrow night I suspect.
Braised country-style pork with “West Indies” dry rub
a slightly doctored Major Grey’s chutney
Roasted Brussels sprouts
Ted’s fresh loaf
Shortcakes with blueberry sauce and whipped cream
Notes & dry rub recipe under here