June 2, 2009

Roasted Brussell Sprouts

I was a strange child. And if you know me IRL (in real life, for those less blog-savvy readers), you're nodding your head in confirmation. Yes, Beth was totally weird. I sang to myself, danced in the outfield when I was placed there for kickball, talked to my stuffed animals and absolutely loved lima beans and brussell sprouts.

I shunned lima beans once I tasted edamame a few years ago (I'm a fickle gal), but my love of brussell sprouts has remained. However, they became a little boring after a while. Then, last year, my sister-in-law made these incredible roasted sprouts for her annual Fakesgiving dinner (you read that right...Fakesgiving...not quite the real thing, but just enough to whet your appetite), and I fell in brussell sprout love all over again. Roasted and salted, they take on this amazing new flavor and have this gorgeous color. I could have eaten the whole bowl, but I restrained myself for the sake of the other guests.

I didn't get the chance to make them after that night and the recipe fell by the wayside...as recipes often do. Last week, the local market had a sale on brussell sprouts, and I had a truly Pavlovian response when I saw them. I didn't have the exact recipe that Mariel (SIL) used, but I made one up in my head based on my previous roasting experiences.

They turned out great! All crispy and golden-brown, with just the right amount of flavor and seasoning. It's really more of a winter dish, since they are in season then, but it hit the spot last night. The rest of the dinner was part of our "Eat Down the Fridge/Pantry" experiment. This is where you only cook meals using things that are already in your fridge/pantry, and refrain from buying anything else until you've cleared out an overstocked kitchen. The main chicken dish wasn't really anything special, but the brussell sprouts were the total star. I give it two snaps up.

Brussel Sprouts (fresh, washed and cut in 1/2)
Olive oil
Optional other vegetables to roast alongside - onions, shallots, red peppers (ick!), carrots...endless possibilities!

Preheat oven to 400. Spread some olive oil onto a sheet pan or baking dish, and toss around the sprouts until they are well coated. Sprinkle with S&P liberally (moreso on the pepper than the salt) and shake until well coated, again.
Roast until browned and soft, about 35-45 minutes, depending on the size of the sprouts and your oven.

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