It is the season for Brussels sprouts and I wanted to revisit this amazing dish that I first posted a couple of years ago; it was my first foray into trying sprouts again after avoiding them like the plague for years. Brussels sprouts have seen an upsurge in popularity the past few years and this remains my favorite way of serving them. Worthy of a holiday side dish I promise…something old really is new again! I’m betting many of us can vividly recall the olive green mushy vegetable that forced us to remain seated at the dinner table longer than we liked because we would suffer almost any punishment before eating those dreaded sprouts.
Forerunners to modern Brussels sprouts were likely cultivated in ancient Rome and Brussels sprouts as we now know them were grown possibly as early as the 13th century in what is now Brussels, Belgium (hence their name). During the 16th century, they enjoyed a popularity in the southern Netherlands that eventually spread throughout the cooler parts of Northern Europe and eventually they made their way to our homes (if not our hearts).
I’ve seen post after post waxing poetic over Brussels sprouts; with a revitalized knowledge of proper preparation; i.e. not cooking them to death they have become popular once again. Look how beautiful and adorable they are…they deserve so much more than being boiled to death!
It seems our parents only knew to cook the life out of all things broccoli, cauliflower, peas and cabbage and I long ago realized that proper preparation made all the difference. So when I saw a fresh bunch of Brussels Sprouts at the market a couple of years ago, I knew the time had come. Prophetically that same day I received an issue of Food and Wine magazine with this recipe in the Trendspotting section and it seemed perfect.
Roasted Brussels Sprouts are combined with red cabbage and adorned with a sweet/savory dressing, pine nuts and dried cranberries; it seemed the perfect foray for my determination to try, try again.
You know how sometimes something you think sounds good turns out so perfect for you. So perfect you eat half of your finished dish for dinner and greedily consume the rest the next day for lunch with nary a photo in site. It’s true…I did it, but luckily I had only made half of the recipe so was happy to relive the experience again. I loved this. A lot.
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Cabbage and Pine Nuts
- 1/2 cup pine nuts
- 1 pound brussels sprouts, quartered
- 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon pure chile powder, such as ancho
- 1 1/2 pounds red cabbage, very thinly sliced on a mandoline (6 cups)
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 1 ounce Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, thinly shaved
- Preheat the oven to 450°. Spread the pine nuts in a pie plate and toast for about 3 minutes, until golden brown. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss the brussels sprouts with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and season with salt and black pepper. Roast for about 15 minutes, until the brussels sprouts are lightly caramelized and tender.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk the lemon juice with the honey, mustard, cayenne and chile powder. Slowly whisk in 1/4 cup of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
- In a large bowl, toss the cabbage with the toasted pine nuts and cranberries. In a small skillet, heat the remaining olive oil. Add the garlic and cook over moderate heat until golden, about 1 minute. Scrape the garlic and hot oil over the cabbage. Add the brussels sprouts and toss, then add the dressing and toss again. Scatter the cheese shavings over the top and serve right away.