What comes to mind when you envision Brussels sprouts? They have a bad rap with kids and adults, and many a time they’ve been dubbed the unofficial “dirt ball.” Contrary to what you may have experienced, these green veggies are quite tasty. With correct preparation, you can join in on a mouthwatering journey to the world of cruciferous vegetables.
Dining on Green Vegetables
Have you ever walked through the grocery store or market, caught the scent, and knew right away you were near a cruciferous veggie? Like their numerous cousins, every member of this category gives off a distinct smell. Although they’re a variety of the ancestral wild cabbage, these sprouts are unique in their own right: The plant grows in a tall stalk form with its sprouts appearing in spiral fashion up the stem, and the leaves remain at the base.
You may not see them in their natural state, as most sprouts sold in stores are offered individually. But health benefits abound with this vegetable. In addition to fiber and protein, Brussels sprouts offer you and your family nutrients such as vitamins K, C, and A, as well as potassium and manganese.
Time for Kitchen Preparation
Growing up, my sisters and I dined on somewhat mashed Brussels sprouts. Not exactly the best experience, but I’m glad I never gave up hope of an appealing taste. If you boil these veggies, keep in mind they will get softer and its nutrients will go right down the drain. Instead, consider steaming, sautéing, or roasting them. Don’t overdo the preparations, and don’t use the microwave; cooked to death is no better than boiled to death. If you find your sprouts looking a bit browned in the pan, place them in a bowl nestled over ice to stop the cooking process and prevent further effects.
A Healthy Recipe to Savor
It’s time to put your skills to the test. Try out this recipe—tested and husband-approved—for a delightful vegan dish that is healthy, tasty, and easy to make.
You will need:
- 4-6 Brussels sprouts per person
- 3-4 broccoli florets per person (optional)
- 1/2 cup of raw sliced almonds
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil (you can substitute olive oil, but it will change the taste)
Start by removing the outer layer from the sprouts and cutting off any brown spots. Rinse and place in a large stove top pan.
Add the avocado oil, and sauté on medium-low heat for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add broccoli if you prefer it, and continue to stir occasionally for 2 more minutes.
Sprinkle in the almonds and stir, so you can coat them with any remaining avocado oil. Sauté for 2 to 3 minutes.
Dish out on plates, and enjoy!
Cruciferous vegetables are excellent on their own or in combination with other foods. There are many ways to eat healthier without sacrificing taste. Do you have a favorite recipe? Share them in the comments below!
Image sources: Emily Clayton | Flickr
This article was brought to you by Tom’s of Maine. The views and opinions expressed by the author do not reflect the position of Tom’s of Maine.