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Seasonal Produce: Brussels Sprouts

The exact origin of Brussels sprouts is unknown. Related to a wild variety of cabbage, their cultivation is credited to the Belgian city that bears their name.

Purchasing

  • Select bright green Brussels sprouts with compact heads that are heavy for their size.
  • Small sprouts are more tender and have a sweeter flavor than large ones.
  • Avoid any with wilted yellow leaves as these are older sprouts and will have a bitter flavor.
  • Refrigerate unwashed Brussels sprouts in a plastic bag for up to 4 days. If stored much longer, they will develop a strong taste.

Preparing

  • Remove any loose and wilted outer leaves and trim the stem ends, taking care not to cut too closely to the bottoms of the leaves or they will separate and fall off during cooking. Rinse under cold water; drain.
  • To promote quicker and more even cooking, cut a shallow “X” into each stem end to allow the heat to penetrate the inside of the sprout. Sprouts can also be cut in half before cooking.
  • For best results, cook Brussels sprouts quickly and just until they are tender. Avoid overcooking to prevent a pasty texture and strong bitter flavor.

Nutrition

  • Good source of fiber.
  • Excellent source of vitamin C.
  • Fat free and low in sodium.

Serving

  • Toss halved Brussels sprouts with olive oil, minced garlic, salt and pepper. Spread onto baking sheet. Bake at 450°F for 25 min. or until tender and edges are browned. Top with cooked and crumbled OSCAR MAYER Bacon.
  • Stir hot cooked Brussels sprouts into your favorite cream or cheese sauce. Serve immediately or bake in a casserole dish and serve au gratin.
  • Top cooked Brussels sprouts with your favorite KRAFT Dressing and toss to coat for instant flavor.
  • Maple syrup, blue cheese, Parmesan cheese, pecans, walnuts, mustard and bacon are ingredients that complement the flavor of Brussels sprouts.
Brussels Sprouts
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