I may have mentioned that long, long ago my husband Ed once told me that if I ever cooked Brussels sprouts he would divorce me.
Just kidding of course, which is why I felt confident to cook up some of these tiny cabbages once when I had to write an article about them. I made several recipes in one day figuring I would get the aroma and arguments all over with in one swoop, as they say.
But surprise of surprises! He liked them! All of them. Every version I made.
So it just goes to show that sometimes you might actually like something you thought you hated if you try it again.
The thing about Brussels sprouts, like all cabbages, is that they can produce an awful smell, especially if you cook them too long, which is what so many cooks did in the days that Ed’s and my mom cooked vegetables. So we grew up believing vegetables should be mushy, army green and, if in the cabbage family, smelly.
No more of that.
This recipe for Brussels sprouts has a small amount of maple and sweet tangerine to tone down the bitter cabbage.
Brussels Sprouts with Tangerine and Hazelnuts
16-18 Brussels sprouts (about 12 ounces)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 cup tangerine juice
2 tablespoons maple syrup
2 teaspoons grated tangerine peel
1/3 cup coarsely chopped toasted hazelnuts
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cut the Brussels sprouts in half; soak for 10 minutes in cool water, drain and dry on paper towels. While the sprouts are soaking, place the vegetable oil, tangerine juice, maple syrup and tangerine peel in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until slightly thickened. Place the sprouts in a roasting pan and pour the tangerine mixture on top. Toss to coat the sprouts evenly. Place the pan in the oven and cook for about 30 minutes or until the sprouts are tender. Mix the vegetables once during this time. Remove the Brussels sprouts from the oven, toss with the hazelnuts and sprinkle to taste with salt and pepper. Makes 4 servings