Recently when I made that odd but amazing Brussels Sprouts Salad, I had about half a package of the fresh sprouts left over. Across the page from the salad recipe was a recipe for Roasted Brussels Sprouts. I was tempted but thought Yawn! How prosaic! Since the recipe was from my “Celebrating a Healthy Harvest” booklet, however, it was worth a gamble. I haven’t yet encountered any losers from that source.
Once again I’m not sure how the magic happened, but the results were terrific. Oven-roasting the Brussels sprouts under a canopy of aluminum foil made the sometimes-tough little vegetable tender and edible with a fork (no knife needed). The mixture of oil, garlic, salt, pepper, and water that formed under the sprouts while they roasted made an amazing sauce—just enough to brown the Brussels sprouts and provide a flavorful glaze for them. A great side dish was born!
I present this recipe in my blog on this date in honor of my dad because I never will serve these without thinking of his description of them—“scared cabbages”. Brussels Sprouts’ appearance as miniature cabbages fascinated him. Daddy patiently endured through many of my apprentice meals when I was in high-school home economics classes—a serving of “scared cabbages” being among them. Today marks the 18th anniversary of his passing. Wish he were here to sample this new and delightful twist on this dish that often was the object of his good-natured jest!
Roasted Brussels Sprouts
1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed and cut in half
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon cooking oil
1/2 teaspoon salt (or salt substitute)
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup water
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Combine garlic, oil, salt, and pepper. Pour over sprouts and toss. Place this mixture in a 9-inch-by-13-inch baking pan; spread sprouts into one layer. Cover with aluminum foil and roast for 12 minutes; then stir. Roast for another 12 minutes or until sprouts are tender when you test them with a fork. Pour water into pan to loosen the flavors; stir. Pour Brussels sprouts and sauce into serving dish. Makes 4 servings.