Make a place in your heart for sweet and tender Brussels sprouts–and even better, a place in your stomach. The secret to enjoying these miniature cabbages is all in how you prepare them–well worth learning so you can get their super health-protecting compounds. [Watch the video to see how to prepare garlic.]
Brussels sprouts are cruciferous vegetables—cousins to broccoli, cauliflower and Bok choy, turnips, chard and watercress. Studies link greater consumption of cruciferous vegetables with decreased incidence of several types of cancer. That's because they are a source of isothiocyanates, a class of phytochemicals that help our bodies detoxify undesirable compounds, possibly stopping cancer before it starts.
Like their cruciferous relatives, Brussels sprouts' taste and smell can be bitter or delicious. Here's how to bring out their natural sweetness and chewiness and instead of overcooking them to be mushy and smelly.
If you're using fresh Brussels sprouts, first trim off all remaining portions of the stem as well as any discolored outer leaves. Wash them well under running water or soak for a few minutes in a bowl of fresh water then rinse. Before cooking, cut an “X” in the bottom of each sprout to ensure that the heat spreads evenly.
Combine first six ingredients in blender and blend just until puréed. Transfer to a nonstick saucepan. Bring mixture to a boil, then immediately reduce heat to moderate. Cook, stirring frequently, until sauce is slightly syrupy. Check taste and if glaze seems too acidic, stir in slightly more honey. Add salt and pepper to taste, if desired. Reduce heat to low and set aside.
If using fresh sprouts, steam 8-10 minutes on the stove, covered, over 1 1/2 cups boiling water (or 4-5 minutes in a microwave oven on a plate with 1/4 cup water).
Drizzle glaze over hot, cooked sprouts and serve immediately. (Glaze may be stored, covered, in refrigerator up to 3 days. Reheat glaze before using.)
Makes 6 servings
Per serving: 70 calories, 1.5 g total fat (0 g saturated fat), 11 g carbohydrate,
2 g protein, 3 g dietary fiber, 25 mg sodium.
Learn more about garlic and cancer from the AICRblog: Ward off Cancer with Garlic.