November 22, 2015
There’s not much my mother and I disagree about, but a sticking issue for us is the preparation of Brussels sprouts. From Belgium, my mom prefers them boiled. This born and raised Southern California girl loves to roast Brussels sprouts. I think even my mom would agree that this roasted rendition here is utterly delicious.
Take your sprouts. Slice in half and roast in a hot oven until crispy on the outside and succulent on the inside. Add a drizzle of reduced balsamic vinegar for tang and sweetness. Finish with a sprinkling of roasted hazelnuts for an addictive crunch. Trust me when I say this is the green holiday side dish you’ve been looking for.
At family gatherings there’s always a mix of needs — this recipe is vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free and paleo, but the most important factor always is taste and this passes the test. I eat everything, I won’t hold back on an ingredient that I feel will make the recipe better (hello, sausage stuffing…). I’ve tried making these roasted sprouts with additions like bacon and butter, but it’s perfect as is, simple and clean.
These directions will guide you through making them the first time. After that, you won’t need a recipe; you’ll have it down. Promise you’ll keep reading the blog???
Oven Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Balsamic, Rosemary and Hazelnuts
Serves six as a side
Note: Due to the intense heat this year I haven’t been able to harvest any winter veggies from my garden. So, to market, I go. When selecting sprouts, look for tight leaf formation. Lately, some of the sprouts at the market have been less than stellar — I go for the big ones. From there I can slice a good chunk off the stem and peel off the old, not so lovely, sad, brown leaves. You will be left with a tight, handsome sprout ready for the oven.
2 pounds Brussels sprouts, big ones (golf ball size)
6 tablespoons olive oil
1 heaping tablespoon rosemary leaves
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons hazelnuts
Preheat oven to 400.
Place a large baking sheet in the oven with it set to 400 degrees. Prep your sprouts by cleaning them, slicing a good chunk off the stem and peel off any sad, wimpy leaves. Slice the sprouts in half. Once the oven has come to temp and the pan is good and hot, add 4 tablespoons of oil to the pan. Place the sprouts cut side down (careful not to touch the hot sides of the pan). Add the rosemary — it will become good and toasty tasting by the end of the roasting process. Roast the sprouts for 20 minutes.
While the sprouts roast, add the balsamic vinegar to a small saucepan and bring it to a boil and reduce to simmer – the vinegar should reduce by half. Simmering the whole 30 minutes the sprouts cook renders a lovely, syrupy liquid. You won’t use all of the balsamic syrup for this recipe, keep the extra in a container and use in lieu of aged balsamic vinegar.
Additionally, toast the hazelnuts until golden and fragrant. This takes about five minutes on medium heat. Slice nuts in half.
After the sprouts cook for 20 minutes carefully flip each one over to the other side – I do this with my hands, but it’s hot, so do so carefully! If you’re sane you’ll use tongs. Drizzle the remaining oil over the sprouts and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt and a few cracks of pepper. Do this from a high vantage point over for even distribution over the entire sheet pan. Return to the oven and roast an additional 10 minutes.
Once the sprouts are roasted to perfection place all of the pan ingredients, including the rosemary and any loose leaves, into a shallow serving bowl. Drizzle the sprouts evenly with 2 – 3 tablespoons of the vinegar and top with hazelnuts. Also, add a good pinch of sea salt and serve warm.