So how do you transform these cute little cabbages into something amazing? — Roast them! I love roasted Brussels sprouts! And I particularly love roasted Brussels sprouts with pomegranate and roasted hazelnuts. There are tender sprouts, a hint of lemon, that uniquely sweet-tart flavor of pomegranates and roasted hazelnuts for a great nutty crunch… all together in one glorious bowl.
It’s early in the season and I’m on a bit of a Brussels sprouts kick at the moment. Possibly making up for all those years as a child where I absolutely despised them and that terrible smell emanating from the kitchen way back when. But why do they smell? Well, first of all, they tend to only get really stinky when overcooked – especially boiled. The high levels of sulforaphane are what do it. Which is also what happens to be a fantastic cancer-fighting characteristic.
Brussels sprouts have a number of seriously good for you characteristics. Like, really good. They are an excellent source of vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, as well as beta carotene, folic acid and fibre. Plus selenium, which has power antioxidant properties that are good for thyroid health and the prevention and treatment of cancer. All the reason to find new ways to enjoy them! Roasting, sautéing or grilling sprouts can transform them into something sweet, nutty — and oh so delicious.
I like Brussels sprouts best when roasted at a high temperature in the oven until golden brown with a tender center and crispy browned edges! You can serve them this way with a sprinkle of lemon juice or parmesan cheese for a simple side. Or go ahead and add some color and serve your’s with sweet pomegranate seeds and crunchy roasted hazelnuts — enjoy!
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Pomegranate and Hazelnuts
- 600 g Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
- 1 large clove of garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 3-4 sprigs thyme, leaves removed
- sea salt and black pepper, to taste
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/3 cup roasted hazelnuts, coarsely chopped (45 g)
- seeds from half a pomegranate, garnish
Preheat oven to 425° F / 220°C and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Place the Brussels sprouts on the prepared baking sheet and toss with garlic, olive oil, thyme, sea salt (I season quite generously) and pepper until well coated. Place on center oven rack and roast, tossing a couple of times, until tender and golden brown, about 20 minutes (or a couple of minutes longer if you want them more browned).
Meanwhile, roast the hazelnuts. In a dry large, heavy fry pan over medium heat, toast the hazelnuts, stirring them to color evenly, until the skins char in places and begin to split and flake, about 10 minutes. Transfer the nuts into a clean kitchen towel and wrap the towel around them. Rub the nuts against one another inside the towel to remove the skins. Do not worry if some bits of skin remain. Transfer the nuts to a cutting board and chop coarsely; you want an uneven mixture of some hazelnut halves and some small pieces.
Transfer the Brussels sprouts to a serving bowl. Sprinkle with the lemon juice and hazelnuts, toss to combine. Adjust seasoning with more sea salt, if necessary. Garnish with pomegranate seeds and serve immediately.
- Roasting the Brussels sprouts at a high temperature helps avoid them becoming mushy. The minimum recommended temperature for roasted vegetables is 400°F / 200°C. I either roast my 200°C for 25-30 minutes, or as in this recipe at 220°C for a slightly shorter time.
- The hazelnuts can also be roasted in the oven or prepared ahead of time. And if you are looking to reduce the effort even more, I recently discovered that pre-roasted whole hazelnuts are also sold at my local organic food store.
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