Here’s a seasonal recipe for you, perhaps not the sweet one that you were hoping for this Christmas from me. If you like brussels sprouts or are somewhat ambivalent about them, do me a favour and give this recipe a go. I had boiled ones the other week at my work cafe as part of a Christmas lunch, and to be honest, I was a bit disappointed by their lack of imagination with this humble vegetable, given that they teach culinary skills.
I’m obsessed with roasted brussels sprouts. I first made them 3 years ago and they were a game changer. Roasting them brings out a nutty flavour somehow that you do not get when boiling or frying them. And texturally I find it really pleasing: soft but not soggy. Another bonus to roasting is that there is no bad smell when you cook them, although at the other end, I can not promise that the gasses will smell any sweeter.
Since being back in the UK, I have discovered that roasting brassica is my favourite way of cooking and eating them. Bold statement, I know. But so far, it holds true.
I have not given you quantities. Sorry. I have never measured out this recipe and now I’ve become that recipe writer who might say to you annoyingly, add a glug of olive oil and if you’re like me, you’d get peeved with them because how many millilitres is there in a glug of oil? Nevertheless, the only thing I can offer by way of excuse is that I have never measured this out because I always vary the amount of brussels sprouts depending on the number of people. I believe I think that 8 brussels sprouts per person is normal, based on the photo at the top, but then again, I do really love brussels sprouts.
Ingredients for roasted brussels sprouts
- Brussels sprouts (however many that you’d like)
- Olive oil (enough to coat the brussels sprouts)
- Salt (to season)
- Pepper (to season)
- Chilli flakes (optional)
- Juice of a lemon (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4.
- Slice the bottoms off and halve them.
- Place cut side down on a baking dish.
- Sprinkle with olive oil and season with salt, pepper and if you want, chilli flakes.
- Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes. Check halfway and shake them around a bit. If you forget this bit, don’t worry, there will be a bit of charring on some, but that tastes alright too.
- For a tangy finish, squeeze a bit of lemon juice over them at the end.
One of my friends recommended adding a drizzle of honey with chilli on them before baking them for additional flavour. That is a new twist that I’ll try this season.
Incidentally, I have also discovered whilst writing up this post that I’ve been spelling brussels sprouts incorrectly all my life, as brussel sprouts. Well, now I know.
What is your favourite way of cooking and eating brussels sprouts?