What’s that thing I saw at the Farmers Market: Brussels Sprouts

Have you ever wandered into the produce booths at the farmers market and seen a vegetable or two (or three) that you did not recognize? I know that I have. Many, in fact, and I consider myself a bit of a foodie and an amateur gardener. And so I am on a mission this year to learn about and to try a few of those unfamiliar foodstuffs…

For years this vegetable would elicit a response of pure “yuck” from me.  And I know that I am not the only one. The problem was I had never actually tried one. This poor veggie gets a pretty bad rap.

Yep. The mighty Brussel Sprout.

how to cook Brussels Sprouts
Photo Credit: Jenna Burris 2015

Last year, after reaching out to my Facebook community, I decided to be brave and give them a try.

For starters, when I went looking for them at the market, I wasn’t really sure what to expect. Apparently, they grow on stalks and you can either purchase the full stalk, or some vendors will cut them off of the stalk for you. The stalks are pretty hard to miss, standing at about two feet tall and pretty sturdy. I was informed that the sprouts will retain their freshness for an extra day or two if you keep them on the stalk. So the inconvenience of cutting them off yourself may be worth it if you need extra time to commit to making them.

Between last year and this year, I have found several recipes for them that are remarkably delicious. I am happy to share some of them with you.

Sauteed Brussels Sprouts with Bacon (yes, bacon. The way God intended. Get local farmer bacon while you are at the market. It’s totally worth it)

  • You need: Brussels Sprouts (cut in half), two-four slices of bacon cut into little pieces, olive oil, two clove garlic, two shallots (I have a bad habit of replacing shallots with onion because who has shallots?), salt, pepper to taste.
  • Start with your bacon in a cast iron pan on medium. Cook it lightly. Add everything else. Cook until the spouts are brown and crispy. Salt and pepper to taste. (I have a friend who swears by sprinkling cheese on the top at the end.} [Editor’s Note: Maple Syrup on top is also amazing.]
how to cook brussel sprouts
Photo Credit: Jenna Burris 2015

Roasted Brussels Sprouts

  • You need: Brussels sprouts (halved), olive oil, two cloves garlic, half of a small onion or shallots. Salt/pepper and other favorite seasonings. We love turmeric, salt, pepper and cumin.
  • Douse, and I mean douse, your Brussels sprouts in olive oil. Add everything else and toss. Add it to a baking dish or roasting pan
  • cook at 400 degrees for 30-40 minutes or until brown and crispy and sizzling.

Brussels Sprouts Slaw.

  • It might seem common sense to some, but I was surprised to realize that they are related to cabbage. So Brussels Sprouts work remarkably well in cabbagy (yes, new word) recipes.
  • Anyway, you need: 1.5 lb of shredded/thinly cut Brussels sprouts, one cup roasted pecans, 1/4 c. maple syrup (don’t you dare use the fake stuff), two TBSP apple cider vinegar, 1/4 cup Dijon mustard, two TBSP lemon juice, 1/4 cup olive oil, one TBSP sugar, salt and pepper to taste.
  • Whisk all of the liquid ingredients and seasonings in a small bowl; this is your dressing. Pour the dressing over your chopped sprouts in a large bowl. Mix thoroughly. Add nuts. Serve. And you are a goddess.

For another delicious idea, try Heather’s Maple-Glazed Brussels Sprouts!

Have you ever tried Brussels Sprouts? Whats you’re tried and true recipe?

Past stories in the “What’s that thing I saw at the Farmer’s Market?”

Editors note: If you see something you want us to try, snap a picture and tag it #eatlocalLLC and post it on our Facebook Pagefollow. Our culinary adventurers will try it out and report back to you!

Dance academy of Libertyville
About Jenna Burris 40 Articles
Jenna is an active wife and mom of 2 game changers (Benjamin 5 years and Jillian 2 years). A professional Counselor by trade, Antioch resident and native Cheesehead, this mindful momma is laid back and up for any mess or adventure, doing her best to live in the moment. When not tuning out or taming tantrums she’s running, cooking, reading, creating music, or shopping local.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.