This dish of roasted brussels sprout with vanilla-garlic butter turned me into a lover of these little sprouts. Sweet, salt and a little tang did the trick.
I try my best to eat produce that’s in season. Not only does it make more sense to eat produce that is grown locally, (rather than eating produce that’s traveled all the way from South America) but it also just tastes better. During the winter, these little mini cabbages sit in the produce section looking so cute and enticing. But brussels sprouts can be bitter and tough.
With the right seasoning and cooking method just about any vegetable can be tasty. So I set out to create a sweeter more tender sprout and it’s my new favorite winter vegetable. Roasting is a great way to bring out the sweetness in many vegetables. Add a little extra sweet to enhance it and these roasted brussels sprouts will change your mind.
How to Prepare the Brussels Sprouts
Remove the loose outer leaves from the sprouts.
Trim a thin slice off the stem end and then cut in half.
Spread the sprouts out on a sheet pan in a single layer. Very lightly coat with high heat oil spray or toss them with 1 Tbsp oil. Roast at 400ºF for 20-25 minutes or until the sprouts begin to brown.
While the sprouts are roasting get the vanilla garlic butter going!
How to Cook with a Vanilla Bean
Use a sharp-pointed knife to cut a lengthwise slit in the vanilla bean pod. Open up the slit and scrape out the sticky seeds from the inside.
Place the butter, salt, garlic, vanilla extract, vanilla bean and the pod and sweetener in a small pot. See the recipe card below for the amounts. Gently heat for 2 minutes and set aside while the the brussels sprouts are roasting. When the sprouts are done, toss with the vanilla garlic butter,
If you don’t have a vanilla bean, double the vanilla extract/powder in the recipe. Cook’s Vanilla Powder is is my favorite vanilla product. There’s no alcohol flavor to worry about and it incorporates nicely.
Since we eat with our eyes first, adding some extra color is a great idea. This is also a good chance to add an ingredient to enhance the flavors in this dish. The dish already has salt, sweet and bitter so a little sour or tang would bring these brussels sprouts up another level. Some beautiful garnishes, perfect for a holiday table include:
- pomegranate seeds
- cranberries cooked with a little sweetener and orange juice
- orange or tangerine slices
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Vanilla-Garlic Butter
- 1 1/2 lbs brussel sprouts
- oil spray
- 3 Tbsp butter
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp granulated garlic
- 1 vanilla bean or additional 1/2 tsp vanilla extract paste or powder
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp agave or honey
- Preheat the oven to 400°F
- Remove the loose outer leaves from the sprouts.
- Trim a thin slice off the stem end and cut in half
- Spread the sprouts out on a sheet pan in a single layer. Very lightly coat with high heat oil spray. Roast for 20-25 minutes or until the sprouts begin to brown.
- While the sprouts are roasting get the good stuff going! Place the butter, salt, garlic, vanilla extract and sweetener in a small pot.
- Use a sharp-pointed knife to cut a lengthwise slit in the vanilla bean pod. Open up the slit and scrape out the sticky seeds from the inside.
- Add the vanilla seeds and the whole pod into the pot. Heat over a very low flame for 2 minutes and stir. Turn off the flame, and allow it to sit.
- Once the sprouts are done roasting, place them in a large bowl. Gently reheat the butter mixture and remove the vanilla pod. Pour over the sprouts, toss and enjoy!