I was never really exposed to Brussels sprouts when I was a child probably because it wasn’t a crop my granny grew in her garden at least not that I can remember. I was always intrigued by them. They looked like little cabbages and I really liked cabbage cooked and raw. Then when I was about 16 I tried them at a buffet style restaurant…yuck. They were overcooked and just shy of mushy, swimming in a watery, buttery substance. It wasn’t until years later that I gained my appreciation for them…an appreciation for properly prepared Brussel sprouts.
I never really attempted to prepare them myself before I had my daughter. My daughter had the same intrigue with these little green globes in the mesh bag at the grocery store. One day she asked me to make them for her. As with introducing any new food to her, I didn’t tell her my experience. I didn’t want to cloud her perception of what she would be trying. I just wanted to make sure that I prepared them to perfection so I wouldn’t spoil her interest in trying new foods. So with any new recipe, I began doing research. I saw them roasted, pan sautéed and steamed. I found recipes that included garlic, parmesan cheese and balsamic vinegar to name a few.
I started out simple…I blanched them and then roasted them to make sure they were cooked all the way through but still had a little of that caramelized flavor. I used a little bit of butter and a little olive oil, salt and pepper. She loved them. I didn’t love the multi-cooking process though. So I kept trying different cooking techniques, adding a new ingredient here and there. One of the best things I learned was to preheat my metal baking pan before I roasted the Brussels sprouts which helped get that caramelization going.
This recipe is my daughter’s favorite. It’s simple in preparation and simple on ingredients which makes my life easy.