Brussels sprouts are the most “hated” vegetable in America, according to a 2008 survey conducted by Heinz. Fast forward to 2016/2017 and that sentiment appears to be changing! Recently, I have been to two trendy local restaurants with phenomenal food and a hip atmosphere – the Craftsman Tavern (https://www.craftsmantavern.com) in Encinitas, CA where their “Snacks” menu featured Deep Fried Brussels Sprouts with Smoked Bacon, Capers, Apple Cider Vinaigrette & The Union Kitchen & Tap (https://www.localunion101.com), whose “Sides” section of the dinner menu had Brussels Sprouts w/ Bacon and Balsamic Glaze right at the top. Now, deep fried “anything” is not part of a health-conscious diet, nor is bacon, but we all must have our “Cheat Meals!”
I know what you are thinking…What is the big deal about Brussels Sprouts? Well, I have some questions for you. Are you stressed? Concerned about cancer (aren’t we all)? Do your joints hurt? Is your cholesterol high? Do you want to look younger? Brussels Sprouts provide antioxidant, Inflammatory /Anti- Inflammatory, & Cardiovascular support providing you an excellent source of vitamin A, vitamin C (way more than an orange, by the way), vitamin K, beta carotene, folic acid, iron, magnesium and fiber. These mini-cabbage look-a-likes are high in selenium which studies have shown to reduce the risk of certain cancer types and specifically for men, increased virility.
In addition to the benefits previously mentioned, Brussels Sprouts can improve digestive health. They are incredibly high in fiber and contain glucoraphanin which produces Sulforaphane to help curb bacteria that harms the stomach lining. But wait…There’s more? The high levels of Vitamin K help your body absorb calcium, ultimately strengthening your bones and teeth. The antioxidants associated with Brussels Sprouts can help with memory loss, fatigue, and renal function, as well as providing relief from eye issues stemming from retinal damage, cataracts, & glaucoma. While not a magic pill, the benefits of including Brussels Sprouts in your diet make them a 4.5-star veggie in our book!*
*Why only 4.5 Stars?
<pstyle=”font-size:16px;”>Vitamin K promotes blood-clotting. If you are on any type of anticoagulant medication, check with your Physician or health care provider before eating any cruciferous vegetables.
Dr. Diana’s Quick & Easy Power Blend Brussels Sprouts
Serves 1 as a meal / Serves 2 as a side
1/2 lb. small Brussels Sprouts cleaned, trimmed, cut in 1/4s
1 tbs Avocado Oil (Premium Avocado Oil from California (Organic))
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/8 teaspoon Ground pepper
1/8 teaspoon Ground Turmeric
1/8 teaspoon Ground Coriander
1/16 Cup Pine Nuts
Spice Blend: Mix salt, pepper, Turmeric, & Coriander in a small dish
Heat avocado oil in sauté pan, medium-high heat. Add trimmed Brussels sprouts & reduce heat to medium while tossing the sprouts so they lightly brown on the edges and sprouts are coated in the avocado oil. After about 5 minutes, add spice mix and toss again & then add pine nuts. Continue to sauté until tender and lightly browned (or to your preference), roughly 10 minutes. Serve immediately.
Feeling more adventurous in the kitchen? Here is a great recipe from Clean Plates!
Crispy Brussels Sprout Hash with Cider Glaze
1-1/4 pounds Brussels sprouts, shaved on a mandoline or thinly sliced
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
2 cups apple cider
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 shallot, sliced into rings
2 teaspoons honey
Freshly cracked black pepper
1/2 cup hazelnuts, roughly chopped
Optional: poached egg (1 per serving)
1. Preheat oven to 375° F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or foil. Divide sprouts evenly between baking sheets. Drizzle olive oil over all; sprinkle with salt. Toss sprouts to coat, then spread in single layer.
2. Roast sprouts until edges are brown and crispy, stirring occasionally, about 25 to 30 minutes, rotating baking sheets from top to bottom and front to back about halfway through.
3. Meanwhile, combine cider, vinegar and shallot in small saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat; cook until liquid is reduced to about ½ cup and is thick and foamy when tilted, about 30 minutes. Stir in honey and cook five minutes longer. Glaze will be thin; it will not look like syrup. Strain through fine mesh sieve; discard shallot (optional.) Add black pepper to taste.
4. Remove sprouts from oven; drizzle evenly with glaze. Return spouts to oven; continue roasting until glaze is bubbly and thickened, about 10 minutes.
5. Meanwhile, toast hazelnuts in single layer in medium skillet over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until lightly browned, about three minutes.
6. In serving bowl, combine glazed sprouts and toasted hazelnuts. Grind additional black pepper over top and serve. Top with poached egg, if desired.