A few years back at a market I walked by something and stopped...I had never seen anything like it and it took me a minute to realize what I was looking at...it was a giant spear of brussel sprouts. Until that moment, I had never really given much thought to where they came from...they just were. I brought home the giant spear of brussels and after that hadn't seen another.
Now a side note, I know it might be strange, but I've always loved brussel sprouts, even as a kid. I think it had to do with my love of all things minature, and brussel sprouts looked like tiny cabbages. My mom, not being a novice to getting her kids to eat things that most kids typically run screaming from (see: Liver and Spinach nights), gladly encouraged my mini-cabbage fascination.
Back to giant spear of brussels. So the other day I was at my grocery store, which sadly isn't usually a utopia of anything that isn't pre-cut & pre-washed, and spotted them...I was so excited I didn't even think about what I would do with them...I wanted that spear! So tonight I was deciding how to make them and remembered Veganomicon had a brussels recipe (Cornmeal-Masala Roasted Brussels Sprouts) that I had looked at a few times. I flipped to it and the 'tip' suggested using sprouts still attached to stem, which she describes as looking "a little like some kind of huge medieval clubbing weapon". Couldn't have said it better myself Isa...I was sold (and loved the clubbing weapon reference so much, took a picture of said weapon half-way through prep).
The recipe itself is absolutely not diet-friendly (8 tbsp of oil!! yikes!), but was easy enough. I didn't have any cornmeal (grocery store has not deemed this appropriate to use with pre-cut & pre-washed veg), so had to sub in breadcrumbs. I also don't have peanut oil, so used half hazelnut oil and then olive oil for the rest (the hazelnut smell was overpowering and didn't want to ruin the flavour). While baking, it filled my kitchen with a yummy smell that reminded me of the holidays and it came out looking awesome!
She suggests you can have this as a meal itself or as a side...I was so excited I decided to just have it as a meal. It tasted delicious, but definitely I think I should have kept them whole - I had one or two little guys I kept whole and they just had this great brussel sprouty taste mixed with the masala crumbs. The halves were overpowered and all I could taste were the crumbs (which were delicious, so I'm not saying it's the worst thing in the world). However, definitely would not recommend this as a meal - I felt heavy and like I had just over-eaten a huge not-so-good-for-me meal, which is not really how you want to feel after a dinner of brussel sprouts.
Cornmeal-Masala Roasted Brussels Sprouts: Although I prefer my brussels to be a little more au natural, these are a nice change and definitely a great option for the mini-cabbage wary. Definitely a great option for a holiday meal side dish! 4 out of 5 mullet men.
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Cornmeal-Masala Roasted Brussels Sprouts