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Insider’s Viewpoint: Give Brussels Sprouts a Chance

Did you know that we are born to inherently like things that taste sweet and dislike things that taste bitter? So it’s no surprise that a survey conducted in 2008 revealed that Brussels sprouts were the most hated vegetable in America. However, their popularity has exploded in recent years.

One of the main reasons people dislike Brussels sprouts may go back to childhood memories of being served overcooked, strong-smelling sprouts. This smell is associated with a compound in the sprouts that contains sulfur. Interestingly, this compound is also linked to their cancer-fighting characteristics. When cooked properly (see recipe below), Brussels sprouts transform into a sweet and slightly nutty vegetable that you simply can’t resist.

Let’s take a closer look at these little cabbages …

Seasonality
Brussels sprouts peak in September through mid-February.

Nutrition
They supply just 40 calories, 3 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber per one cup serving, and are a good source of Vitamins A, C and K, folate, and fiber.

Selection Tips
Choose firm, compact, bright green sprout heads with minimal nicks and no torn or yellowing leaves. Smaller sprouts have a sweeter taste.

Storage
Remove and discard any damaged or loose leaves. Store sprouts in a plastic bag in the coldest part of your refrigerator and use within a few days. When stored for too long, they may develop an unpleasant strong flavor.

Recipe

Perfectly Roasted Brussels Sprouts

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Wash and halve each sprout head.
  3. Arrange in a single layer on a large baking sheet.
  4. Drizzle lightly with olive oil and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Try experimenting with smoked paprika, garlic powder or salt-free seasoning blends.
  5. Place the baking sheet into the oven and roast for 30-35 minutes, tossing a few times for even browning.
  6. Enjoy!

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