Experiment: Roast Brussel Sprouts

Roasted Brussel Sprouts 1

Well, as you can see from the above picture, there is quite a lot going on here besides Brussels sprouts. Indeed, the combo here includes potatoes, parsnips, onion and, although it is not apparent in the picture, all of these ingredients were roasted alongside some beef ribs as a further experiment in the series beginning with my Meat and Veggie Roast  post from a couple of weeks ago.

If, like me, you have been curious about how Brussels sprouts might turn out after being roasted, you needn’t roast them with meat, or even include other vegetables, but you can certainly follow along with the rest of this post and get some ideas from the way I did things…

Roasted Brussel Sprouts 2

For the veggies, I trimmed the stems and removed the coarse outer leaves from a 1lb package of Brussels sprouts, then peeled two parsnips and cut them into irregular chunks about the same size as the sprouts. To this, I added some baby red potatoes (about 8 or 9), a very small onion, coarsely chopped, and then tossed everything with about ¼ cup of olive oil, a teaspoon of garlic salt and some fresh thyme.

I dithered a little over whether to cut the sprouts and potatoes in half and then finally decided to keep them whole. In retrospect, I think going with halves would have been better. These sprouts were just a little too big for a mouthful and, though the potatoes cooked well enough, I rather like the golden crispiness you get on the cut surfaces.

 

Roasted Brussel Sprouts 3

I started roasting my Prime Rib ‘Finger’ Bones (as my supermarket calls them) about 20 minutes before adding the veggies. They threw off just enough fat to ‘oil’ the bottom of the roasting pan and add some additional flavor to everything else. As you can see, the veggies are fairly loosely spread out over the pan and all but some of the onion pieces are in contact with the bottom. I roasted at 425 degrees for about 40 minutes and tossed the pieces with a spoon about halfway through.

Apologies for not taking a picture further along during the cooking process, or of a serving portion plated along with the meat, but you can see the final appearance of the veggies in the initial photograph. The meat, I have to say, turned out very nicely and the parsnips, which I often cook much the same way, were as good as ever.

And … my verdict on the sprouts?

Well, there is no doubt that roasting significantly changes the character of Brussels sprouts by diminishing the rather sulfurous, cabbage-like quality and gives them a mellow nuttiness. In truth, I doubt you will convince young kids to suddenly love them this way but many adults who don’t usually care for the vegetable may become converts after trying these.

Myself… I happen to love Brussels sprouts in all their boiled cabbage glory and find the taste an integral and much-loved part of a Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner. Accordingly, though I like the ones I made here, when all is said and done, I think that sprouts are one of the few vegetables that are not better when roasted…

Ah, well… It was interesting to try.

 

 

 

5 thoughts on “Experiment: Roast Brussel Sprouts”

  1. I once tried roasting brussel sprouts, which I love. However, I decided my standard cooking method is simply hard to beat. I always eat on the run, so one day a put a handful of B. sprouts in a microwave bowl, washed, trimmed and halved; then I sprinkled a few drops of water over them, poured maybe a T of olive oil, some balsamic vinegar, fresh ground pepper and a few crystals of pink Himalayan salt – tossed them into microwave for 3 minutes. So easy, SO Good. This is a frequent lunch or snack.

  2. Sybaritica dear,
    Could you say more about the prime rib ‘finger bone’ cut. I’m not familiar with it. If I asked a typical USA grocery butcher for this, would he know what it is? And could he provide me with the same cut? Many thanks…I so love reading your blog…and the ethnic diversity you introduce to us.

    1. Hi … I rather think the name ‘prime rib finger bone’ may be an invention of the butchers at the store where I buy all my meat. I have not come across it elsewhere that I recall, although I have seen the name finger bones used to refer to ‘finger size riblets’ of either pork or beef. Basically, the ones I get are the same section of bone that comes attached to a prime rib steak except that the ‘steak’ is cut away and you usually get two,. three or more bones together. I am not crazy about beef short ribs (too fatty) but these pieces are great.

      1. Thank you…I’m not a big meat eater but the roasted vegetables with the meat looked tempting; and I’m a big fan of roasted vegetables.

        I was guessing that you would respond in that manner…how about a Asian grocery store? I’m guessing the butcher at Hong Kong Grocer in Tacoma might know this cut. Is there much meat on finger bones? Probably enough to gnaw on? It’s difficult to communicate at this grocer because 99.1 % seem to be Asian…and Asian run. One of my favs!

        I’m already subscribed to your blog but Word Press tried to get me to join…all these passwords drive me nuts; so if acceptable I’d rather read from here. I must say, Sybaritica, You do find interesting recipes that are off the beaten path. I love them…but may not try all. Limited time, you know…too many interests. Take care, my friend.

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