With cruciferous veggies being all the health rage, “Brussels sprouts” as they are now known, contain sulforaphane, a phytochemical with anticancer properties. Although boiling reduces the levels of sulforaphane, stir frying as in this recipe does not result in significant loss, and everything tastes better in a cast iron skillet! A food I would normally associate with the United Kingdom, Brussels sprouts is native to the Mediterranean region along with other cabbage species and widely cultivated in Northern and Continental Europe, and the United States. When I saw this lovely traditional winter stock vegetable (considered sweetest after a frost) fresh in the market and still on the stalk, I couldn’t resist. Finish with a hint of balsamic and a bit of shaved hard Parmesan or Romano cheese, keeping in mind that, like fine wine, not all balsamic is created (or aged) equally. Bon appétit!
1 pound of Brussels sprouts
6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (the best is from Greece!)
4 cloves garlic, pressed
salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Parmesan, Romano or other hard grating cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Trim bottom of Brussels sprouts and slice in half, bottom to top. Heat oil in skillet over medium heat, add pressed garlic and stir until infused in olive oil. Place sprouts cut side down in skillet, sprinkle with salt and pepper and drizzle with a little extra olive oil. Cook undisturbed until sprouts begin to brown on bottom. Transfer pan to oven and roast, shaking and turning every 5 minutes until sprouts are quite brown and tender, approximately 20 minutes. Remove from oven and add more salt and pepper as needed. Stir in balsamic vinegar and serve warm.