For some reason, my parents never served brussel sprouts when I was a kid. It's a classic joke how gross they are (along with lima beans), so I just always assumed that yeah, they must be horrible.
I don't recall eating a brussel sprout until I was somewhere in my late twenties, when they had become kind of trendy. Roasted, with fantastic seasonings, like balsamic vinegar and/or bacon.
I was surprised to find that I really liked them....and not just because of the vinegar and bacon....later I had them steamed (or maybe it was boiled) from a British-style pub and I still enjoyed them. I suppose it might help that I already love vegetables like cabbage and broccoli. Stinky veggies do not deter me.
I also like that brussel sprouts are small, cute, and chewy. There's something very satisfying about their chewiness. It's a workout for the jaws.
I've had a couple of experiences where I thought I might have a medical addiction to brussel sprouts. If you just put olive oil, salt and pepper on them, and roast them until they're a little burned, they taste like popcorn. One day I could NOT stop eating them....and I paid dearly for it later that day. Because you see, brussel sprouts have a lot of FIBER, my friend. And if you're not accustomed to a lot of fiber, your intestines will not process it quietly. Just a warning.
These brussel sprouts were roasted with grapes, garlic, and pecans and then blue cheese was added later. Purple grapes would add more color variation, but I used green. These are delicious and roasted grapes are surprisingly exciting. A very easy, hearty, seasonal side dish.
Roasted Brussel Sprouts, Grapes, and Pecans with Blue Cheese
- 2 pounds brussel sprouts, cleaned and ready to roast
- 8 ounces grapes
- 3 garlic cloves, smashed and chopped
- 1/2 cup pecan halves or pieces
- 4 ounces blue cheese crumbles
- Dried thyme
- Salt and pepper
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F and line a large baking sheet with foil.
- Trim the ends off your brussel sprouts, slice them in half, and place them on the baking sheet.
- Add the grapes, olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, and dried thyme. Mix it all together with your hands and spread the mixture evenly on the baking sheet.
- Roast for about 15 minutes.
- Then add the pecans.
- Roast for 15 minutes longer (or until desired roasted-ness).
- Once the sprouts have a cooled a tiny bit (or not), add the blue cheese crumbles.
- Mix it all together and serve!
Probably serves about 6-8.