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The Gardener's Kitchen: Brussels Sprouts

Updated on March 14, 2012

The Brussels sprout


Brussels sprouts or Brussel sprouts, it does not matter which spelling you use all that matters is that you give them a try.

I have found that this cruciferous, cold loving vegetable is one the most controversial foods around. Not the carnivore versus vegetarian or vegetarian, vegan controversy, but one based upon choice. Now I understand people not liking parsnips or possibly squash but the Brussels sprout that is entirely a different matter. 

When it comes to the sprouts that have been grown near Brussels for over 400 years, people either hate them or like them. 

The Brussels sprout is a relative of, for example, cauliflower, broccoli and kale; all of which are tasty in their own right. I am most pleased to say that I can count myself among those who understand, appreciates and finds delicious the Brussels sprout.


more sprouts




My mother also loved Brussels sprouts and she would occasionally have a plate full of spouts, just spouts, with a dab or two of butter and some salt and black pepper, for supper.

I do something similar but rather than butter and salt, I use a tomato sauce, the same sauce that I would pour over pasta and eat my fill. One upside of this is that my wife will also eat a few spouts this way as long as there is some asparagus to accompany the sprouts or green beans which are another of her favourites. I like green beans, well I eat them, fresh they are tasty, crisp, frozen, bearable, but out of a can no way.

When cooking your sprouts do not, I repeat, do not overcook them. They need to be firm, not raw, but firm.

Brussels Sprouts Stir Fry:




1- 25 Brussels sprouts

2- 1 tbsp sesame oil

3- 1 tbsp tamari

4- 1 tbsp sesame seeds




1- Be gentle, snap spouts off stem

2- Wash and remove yellow leaves

3- If you have just picked them you can soak the spouts in lightly salted warm water for ten minutes. This will remove any unwanted visitors.

4- Cut sprouts in half

5- Add sesame oil to wok or frying pan, heat

6- Add sprouts, be sure to cover them.

7- Turn sprouts every four minutes

8- Add tamari and sesame seeds

9- Serve and enjoy



You can use soy sauce if you do not want to use tamari.

This dish goes great with noodles or rice.

When I eat my sprouts with leftover tomato sauce, I cut the larger ones in half but leave the smaller ones whole. I find that steaming is the best way to prepare them when eating them this way.

If you slice the spouts thinly you can also use them as a pizza topping on your homemade pizza but I have found that even some sprouts lovers have difficulty adding them to a pizza.

It does not matter how you eat them or how you spell them, just give them a try, you may find that the stir fry recipe above will change your mind about this reliable and most delicious vegetable.




brussels sprouts

courtesy flickr/x-eyedblonde
courtesy flickr/x-eyedblonde

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