I love this time of year, partly for the fall weather (arguably non-existent in LA other than Santa Ana winds, falling pine needles, and the smell of wildfires), but I’m mostly excited for the fall crops.
Butternut Squash… Brussels Sprouts… Root Vegetables… Pumpkins…
One of my favorites are Brussels sprouts. I know, I know, you hated them as a kid. Your mother forced you to eat the mushy, boiled, stinky, overcooked puke-green orbs. BUT, when prepared right (no offense, Mom), Brussels are delicious!
Nothing tops roasted Brussels sprouts. They are simple to prepare and have a fantastic caramelized flavor. Here’s how The Pilates Nutritionist eats ’em:
- 1 stalk of Brussels sprouts (about 2 feet long) or 2-3 pounds of loose Brussels sprouts
- 1 onion, sliced
- a few tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (or a combo of olive oil and coconut oil)
- 1-2 teaspoons sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 teaspoons dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- Rip Brussels sprouts off the stalk. Trim off ends and peel away discolored leaves, if any. Cut each sprout in half lengthwise (if the sprout is tiny, just leave it whole)
- Put Brussels sprouts on a large baking sheet. Add oil and seasonings, stirring to coat. Spread out in one single layer. Tip: if they are cut side down, they caramelize better.
- Roast at 400 degrees F for 25-35 minutes, or until soft when pierced with a fork and slightly browned.
Fun Facts about Brussels sprouts:
- Brussels sprouts are named after the capital of Belgium, near which they supposedly originated. (This is why Brussels is capitalized and appears to be plural. A single sprout is a Brussels sprout NOT a Brussel sprout. I admittedly made that mistake for a while. Oops.).
- Most Brussels sprouts grown in the US are grown in California.
- They are high in glucosinolates, a class of phytochemicals that may protect against cancer. Specifically, Brussels sprouts have a uniquely healthy combination of at least four of these compounds: glucoraphanin, glucobrassicin, sinigrin, and gluconasturtiian.
- Rich in sulfur compounds, Brussels sprouts assist in the normal detox functions of the body.
- Many of the nutrients in these sprouts help to reduce inflammation in the body including: vitamins C and E, beta-carotene, manganese, antioxidants including isorhamnetin, quercitin, kaempferol, caffeic acid and ferulic acid.
- And finally, they taste really good when prepared properly!