I know, Brussels sprouts can be a little bit marmite! Personally I grew up absolutely hating them, because my granny used to boil them to mush. It was only much later as a adult that I had them served to me at a restaurant, roasted and glazed in blasamic vinegar and maple syrup. They were SO delicious, I created my own version and have been making them this way ever since. In a quest for seasonal eating, its difficult to ignore brassicas at this time of year, the first frosts make them tender and sweet you just need a little creativity to turn them into something wonderful. This dish captures the essence of winter with its roasted goodness and festive touch of pomegranate seeds.
Brussels sprouts are a good source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, vitamin K, vitamin A, folate, and manganese. They are high in fiber, which is beneficial for digestive health, helps regulate bowel movements and promotes a feeling of fullness, which can help to keep body weight normal. They are also antioxidant which helps to combat oxidative stress and inflammation in the body. In the Ayurvedic Tradition, sprouts and brassicas are generally balancing for all doshas, and should be lightly cooked rather than eaten raw to promote digestibility.
For the Glaze:
1 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons maple syrup (optional, for sweetness)
Pinch of salt
For the Sprouts:
1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and black pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons balsamic glaze
1/2 cup pomegranate seeds
1/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (optional, for added crunch)
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C
Make the Balsamic Glaze: Add the glaze ingredients to a small saucepan, mix well and bring to the boil, stiring occasionally to ensure that the maple syrup is dissolved. Once it starts simmering, reduce the heat to low to maintain a gentle simmer. Let it cook for about 15-20 minutes or until the balsamic vinegar has reduced by half and has a thick, syrupy consistency.
For the Sprouts: In a large bowl, toss the Brussels sprouts with olive oil, salt, and black pepper until they are well coated. Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Roast in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until they are golden brown and crispy at the edges. Shake the pan halfway through the roasting time to ensure even cooking. Drizzle the roasted Brussels sprouts with balsamic glaze, and toss them gently to coat. Transfer the glazed Brussels sprouts to a serving dish. Sprinkle the pomegranate seeds and the chopped pecans or walnuts over the top.
Serve as part of a festive lunch, or with warm crusty bread for a simple winter supper.