Monday, November 28, 2005

Brussels Sprouts

At 10 calories a piece, Brussels Sprouts are a bargain.  They're low in fat and sodium, high in dietary fiber, antioxidants, vitamin C, folate, beta carotene and vitamin E. They are cholesterol free, as well as YUM delicious.

They have proven health benefits in the field of cancer prevention and have shown that they help prevent macular degeneration (a leading cause in blindness).    

Brussels Sprouts are part of the Brassica Family and therefore cousin to broccoli as well as cabbage. They grow in bunches of 20 to 40 on the stem of a plant that grows from two to three feet tall.

In the late 1500's, Brussels Spouts became a popular delicacy in Belgium, and are therefore named after their capital, Brussels.  In the 1700's Captain Cook ordered his crew to eat sprouts, as well as limes to battle scurvy. (Do you think the chef on his ship knew about stir-frying?)

Brussels sprouts are commonly misspelled and mispronounced as "Brussel sprouts."

Brussels Tips!

  • Your Brussels Sprouts should be firm, compact, bright green and no larger than a walnut.
  • Small sprouts have a more tender texture, and the tight heads indicate freshness.
  • Be sure to choose Brussels Sprouts that are a good green color. Avoid puffy, wilted, or yellow sprouts.
  • Texture should be firm, leaves compact, and by all means - butt ends clean.
  • Prepare sprouts by washing and then removing any yellow leaves.
  • Refrigerate unwashed in a plastic bag and use within 3 days.
  • Freeze Brussels Sprouts for long-term storage. Blanch the sprouts for 3-5 minutes and immediately rinse in cold water before draining and storing in an air-tight container.
  • Boil sprouts for 5-6 minutes, add salt and pepper toseason and toss in a touch of (one teaspoon) garlic butter and a few herbs.
    Or toss with a teaspoon of olive oil.
  • Stir-fry in any kind of nut oil (Hazelnut or Walnut oil is good) for 2 minutes; then add a couple of tablespoons of water, cover and bring to the boil. Simmer for a couple of minutes  until sprouts are tender.  You sure don't want to overcook em and make them mushy.  When done, sprinkle a few pine nuts on them.
  • Brussels Sprouts Royale - Fit for a Queen or a Lady!


    1 lb onions, sliced thin
    1 tablespoon butter
    1 tablespoon sugar
    1 lb brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
    1 generous sprig of thyme
    2 pints low-fat chicken or vegetable stock
    freshly ground black pepper
    Service with reduced-fat sour cream
    or plain low-fat yogurt.
    cayenne pepper



    1. Put the onions into a pan with the butter,
    cover and sweat over a gentle heat forever - a long time -
    I lost track of the time. Just let it sweat until the onions
    are very tender and soft.
    2. Sprinkle the sugar over the onions and cook, uncovered,
    for another 10-15 minutes until the onions are
    lightly colored and look a little like jam.
    3. Add the sprouts and thyme and stir around.
    4. Pour in the stock and season with salt and pepper.
    Bring to the boil and simmer for about ten minutes
    until the sprouts are just tender.
    5. Cool slightly, remove the thyme sprig, then liquidise in two batches.
    6. Reheat gently if necessary and adjust seasoning.
    7. Serve piping hot with a spoonful sour cream or yogurt
    with a dash of cayenne pepper

      I got this recipe and information from the kick in the tush club.  Sounds good and I can't wait to make it.
  •    It is my day off.  Finally.  I am going to sleep until 12:30 and then if the roads are still good go work out.  I really need it.  I am so motivated to lose weight by the time my surgery get done.  I would like to be at least 20 pounds lighter.

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