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addictively crispy brussel sprouts

August 13, 2013

roasted brussels sprouts

 

“Brussels Sprouts? Are you serious?”

Well, yes. I’m sorry if you were hoping for cake.

But, in my defence, these aren’t your average brussels sprouts. They aren’t mushy, or slimy or faintly smelling of fart. They don’t require the addition of bacon or duck fat or some other meaty product in order to make them palatable.

Oh no.

These are the brussels sprouts.

The ones that have your flatmates poking their noses out of their rooms and into the kitchen in hope of snaffling a few stray mouthfuls. The ones that you will somehow feel compelled to make three or four times a week. The ones that you will finish off, whilst leaving perfectly succulent roast chicken behind.

I’m not saying it’s the only way to cook them, but after over twenty batches eaten just in the Winter of 2013, I’m going to put it out there and say that once you’ve made them this way, it’s very hard to go back.

 

roasted brussels sprouts

It all started with that meal at Glebe Point Diner, months and months ago, where, under a mound of tender Berkshire Pork, I encountered a brussels sprout unlike any other.

Shatteringly crisp with a tender, yet bitey, center. Salty and charred and more-ish.

I tried all manner of ways to replicate them, until research (and discussion) led me to conclude that they’d probably been deep fried and that I shouldn’t try any further.

But I did.

Because I’m stubborn like that.

roasted brussels sprouts

Out came the knife and on went the oven.

On went the spices… and then off they came again, because really. If you’re making sprouts you want to taste sprouts. Right?

On went the olive oil and salt and pepper and into my mouth they went.

Over and over and over again.

We’d hardly go two days without them.

roasted brussels sprouts

“I don’t know why you’d cook brussels sprouts any other way.” said my dad, after (yet another) roast chicken dinner.

“I don’t know why you’d cook them any other way.” said Lou, after eating a bowl of not much other than the green stuff (supplemented with the most meagre spoonful of beef cheek).

“Why would you bother making them any other way?” asked Anna-May’s Irish guest, after declaring his love of cabbage and ‘taters. (High praise indeed!)

And each time, I shrugged, not having made them any other way since the beginning of Winter, and not being likely to do so.

roasted brussels sprouts

I’ve eaten them alongside slow cooked beef cheeks. Next to roast chicken breast. Alongside sausages and tossed into roast vegetables.

I’ve eaten leftovers between chunks of bread with little more than a spicy mustard to moisten the loaf. In amongst bits of spaghetti tossed in butter.

And I’m not sure when I’ll stop – they’re just too easy to have around.

And if you needed further convincing, they’re good for you. Healthy even. Dark leafy greens that have been oven roasted and not fried. They’re cheap and simple. It’s a matter of chop, toss, bake. (With an optional toss in between times.)

But most of all (yes, most of all), they’re addictive. Not quite dried out and dehydrated like the kale chips that threaten to overtake even the most sensible of food blogs – but still, addictively crispy. With charred, smoky edges and bitey cores. With the clear bitter-sweetness of cruciferous vegetables – unsullied by the bacon that is often paired with it.

roasted brussels sprouts

 

addictively crispy brussel sprouts
Recipe type: side dish
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2
 
Ingredients
  • 15 brussels sprouts
  • 2 tbsp (40ml) olive oil
  • ¼ tsp smoked paprika
  • salt & pepper
How to make it
  1. Pre-heat your oven to at least 220C, fan forced and get a big, flat baking tray out.
  2. Give the brussels sprouts a quick rinse to get rid of any dirt.
  3. Chop the end off (where the leaves all meet) and pull away one or two of the outer leaves if they're a bit dirty or sad looking.
  4. Use either a knife or a food processor to finely shred the brussels sprouts into thin ribbons. You don't have to be too fussy about it - think coleslaw!
  5. Toss the shredded sprouts in the olive oil and paprika so that they're coated with a fine sheen of oil.
  6. Spread the sprouts out on your prepared baking sheet and sprinkle salt and pepper over the top. Be generous with the seasoning as the salt really helps the sprouts to crisp up!
  7. Roast the sprouts in your pre-heated oven. After 10 minutes, give them a bit of a turn about with a pair of tongs then let them cook for a further 5 or so minutes. When the edges are charred and you smell just a bit of smoke, they're done!

 


  • #1
    August 13th, 2013

    That sounds pretty good! Never had brussel sprouts before but I know they have a bad rep but it seems to be making a comeback lately hehe will have to try this 🙂

  • #2
    koji
    August 13th, 2013

    these sprouts are the best! they taste a million times better than boiled too

  • #3
    August 13th, 2013

    They are delicious, everyone. She speaketh the truth.

  • #4
    August 13th, 2013

    Wow, so beautiful looking for a vegetable that nearly no one likes. Love the simplicity. I don’t care what it is but I’ll take a dive into that!

  • #5
    August 13th, 2013

    Thanks for the recipe! I always put bacon, but will give this a go..!

  • #6
    Roya
    August 14th, 2013

    Has anyone tried this with FROZEN brussel sprouts yet? j/w 😉

  • August 14th, 2013

    I’ve never seen frozen brussels sprouts before! I’d love for you to try it and let me know how it goes so I can update the recipe with your feedback 🙂

  • #7
    August 15th, 2013

    Ok ok ok you’ve convinced me! But don’t think I won’t be throwing in some toasted cumin seeds as well…..I can’t help myself, is an Indian thing.

  • #8
    August 20th, 2013

    Hmmm… I’m not a lover of them, but if anyone could make them taste amazing… you could! Love the idea of them being crispy and charred. I think I’ll have to try it!

  • #9
    August 22nd, 2013

    I only just discovered the joy of brussels sprouts last year and waited patiently for them to come back in season – they have been in nearly every meal this winter 😉 I usually shred and saute with garlic but these sound brilliant too!

  • #10
    Annie
    August 22nd, 2013

    Stuart made this for dinner tonight – delicious! He even approves of having it on toast 🙂

  • #11
    October 9th, 2013

    Oh Shez, I made these on the weekend with a nice rump steak and it was so moreishly delicious. A perfect way to eat your greens (and enjoy it too)!

  • #12
    July 9th, 2015

    […] answer, at the moment, is usually some variation of this brussel sprouts recipe, tossed through grains or pasta, but a cheery bunch of purple and orange carrots called for a mix up […]

Shez