does not mince words when referring to his cruciferous childhood nemesis: "We kids feared many things in those days — werewolves, dentists, North Koreans, Sunday school — but they all paled in comparison to Brussels sprouts."
Heck, I'd add
, beets and spinach to my list of culinary horrors. Luckily, most palates grow up.
Need a big-kid reason to eat Brussels sprouts?
The vegetable's cancer-fighting properties should persuade even the pickiest eater to open wide. One cup of the green orbs has about 50 calories. They're also an excellent source of vitamins A and C and a fair source of
Often a strong dislike for a particular food has to do with its preparation. I'll skip liver and onions for a silky-smooth French pate, slippery canned beets for oven-roasted ruby reds and mushy canned spinach for a crisp, fresh salad.
It's no secret overcooked Brussels sprouts emit a sulfurous stink. But the preparation here brings out the vegetable's natural sweetness without the off-putting smell. We used frozen sprouts because they're available year-round, but you can also use fresh when they're in season.
Salty bits of prosciutto, sweet dried cranberries and crunchy pecan pieces make a snazzy garnish.
C'mon, what's not to like?
Balsamic roasted Brussels sprouts
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 35 minutes
1 package (16 ounces) frozen Brussels sprouts, thawed, or 1 pound fresh sprouts
Olive oil cooking spray
1 thin slice (about 1/2 ounce) prosciutto, diced into small pieces
2 tablespoons each: pecan pieces, dried cranberries, balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon olive oil
1. Heat oven to 400 degrees. Pat Brussels sprouts completely dry; place in a single layer on a foil-lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with prosciutto. Spray with olive oil spray. Roast, 30 minutes.
2. Stir sprouts; sprinkle with pecans and cranberries. Spray again with olive oil spray; bake until tender and pecans are slightly toasted, 5 to 10 minutes.
3. Whisk together the vinegars, mustard and olive oil. Place sprouts in a bowl; drizzle with vinaigrette. Toss gently to coat. Sprinkle with salt to taste, if you like.
Per serving: 96 calories, 30% of calories from fat, 4 g fat, 0 g saturated fat, 2 mg cholesterol, 10 g carbohydrates, 5 g protein, 91 mg sodium, 5 g fiber.