Saturday, July 12, 2008

Parmesan Crusted Cauliflower & Brussel Sprouts

When I went to the butcher the other day and my older one said, "Mommy, will you make brussel sprouts with that?", I beamed with pride-- all my efforts have paid off (for now of course, I'm not that naive).

Everyone I meet says they don't like brussel sprouts-- but they probably just don't know how to make them taste delicious!

I on the other hand, have never been a fan of cauliflower-- that is, until a couple of weeks ago when my organic delivery service sent me a "mixed box" and I decided to venture out and threw them in the mashed potatoes. I think they're kind of a less flavorful- more mild tasting, broccoli-ish vegetable.

Brussel sprouts are really like eating teeny, tiny, and very cute cabbages. I love them now that I know how to prepare them in a couple of fabulous ways.

Here's the scoop on how to get the yum factor:

Prep Time: 5-10 minutes
Cook Time:
15 minutes

  • 1 lb. (about 500 grams) brussel sprouts (the smaller and harder the better)
  • 1/2 lb. (about 250 grams) cauliflower cut into small/bite size pieces
  • 2-4 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt (preferably a good sea salt)
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
Tip: If you buy a chunk of Parmesan it will stay fine for months in the refrigerator, and it takes 30 seconds to grate it with one of these.) OR, Costco sells this huge bag of refrigerated, good quality grated Parmesan cheese. You can keep a cup of it in an air-tight container in the refrigerator, and store the rest in the freezer-- when you are ready for a refill, it's like an endless supply at your fingertips! --Thanks Erika for that advice a few years ago, see I am a good listener.

The path the your veggie dreams:
  1. Cut the end off each brussel spouts (the flat bottom part), then slice brussel sprouts in half -slicing down the middle of the flat part (you want them to stay held together while sauteing).
  2. Pour about 2 tablespoons olive oil into a non-stick pan.
  3. Before heating oil, add the brussel sprouts to the pan with the open- flat side facing down (this will cook them inside before we start moving them around in the pan with the cauliflower).
  4. Turn heat on medium low, and make sure pan is doesn't get too hot, so they don't brown too quickly.
  5. Sprinkle some salt over the top (probably about 1/2 tsp.), and let cook untouched for approximately 5 minutes or until they are brown (but not burned) on the bottom.
  6. Add chopped cauliflower, a little more olive oil, and another sprinkling of salt to the pan and stir.
  7. Let saute about 5-10 minutes more, they are cooked when you can stick a fork into the brussel sprouts and cauliflower.
  8. Generously sprinkle grated Parmesan cheese over top before serving.

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