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Embracing Brussels Sprouts


Brussels sprouts, Brussels sprouts…how do I love thee? Let me count the ways: Let’s see, that would be three ways, this month.

With my seasonal favorite popping up at the farmer’s market, co-op, and at some local restaurants, I enjoyed three simple, tasty, and elegant preparations of Brussels sprouts this month.

At the the Red Stag, I sampled their side dish of Brussels sprouts, which were sautéed and prepared with toasted pecans and paprika. The sprouts were firm and had a subtle smoky flavor from the paprika.

At Café and Bar Lurcat, I sampled a simple preparation of sautéed Brussels sprouts. The sprouts were buttery and sautéed until firm. They were a welcome savory accompaniment to my rather sweet pork entrée.

Thirdly, I had several opportunities to purchase the tiny cultivar group of wild cabbage at the St. Paul Farmer’s Market. I looked for sprouts with a bright green color and a firm feel and avoided the batches that looked wilted or soft. The main bane of the Brussels sprout is overcooking, which can lead to a sulfurous taste and smell. At home, I roast my Brussels sprouts, and my husband and I have grown to adore this simple preparation.

• 1 1/2 pounds trimmed Brussels sprouts, sliced in half
• 3 tablespoons truffle oil or olive oil
• 1 teaspoon truffle salt or kosher salt
• 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

• Preheat oven to 400 degrees
• Toss halved Brussels sprouts with oil, salt, and pepper
• Place on a baking sheet sliced side down. Roast for 30 to 45 minutes. Reduce heat when necessary, to prevent burning. Brussels sprouts should be browned over the top when done.

Whether enjoying them out on the town, or in my own home, I always enjoy the season’s crop of this healthy and tasty cruciferous vegetable.

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Minnesota Monthly's Taste Blog answers your restaurant and dining questions, dishes on latest discoveries, reflects on breaking news, and generally brings the plate to the page with a skilled crew of experts: Learn more about the Taste bloggers.

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