Go ahead and gag. I would venture to guess that you are in good company with a large percentage of the rest of the world also not liking these “tiny cabbages”. But if you haven’t tried Brussels sprouts in a long time or, in your last memory of them, they were steamed to the point of being gray, I would revisit your dislike with this recipe. There is something about the flavor of the butternut squash that lends itself to the Brussels sprout and vice versa. This recipe came about simply because I was lacking ingredients. On the one hand, I had a half of a butternut squash and on the other, literally, a hand full of Brussels sprouts. And so it was! I have taken this dish to a few parties and have actually netted the highest compliment a cook can receive – “I don’t even like Brussels sprouts!”
Brussels Sprouts With Butternut Squash
1/2 butternut squash, skinned and cut into bite-sized pieces
7-10 Brussels sprouts, destemmed and cut in half lengthwise
3 tablespoons finely diced yellow onion
4 tablespoons grapeseed or olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1 sprig fresh rosemary
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large glass pan or deep roasting pan, mix together butternut squash, Brussels sprouts and onion. Add in oil and mix to coat. Sprinkle with salt and top with rosemary sprig. Cover pan with aluminum foil and put into oven. Bake for around 40 minutes, stirring occassionally and removing the aluminum foil after the first 20 minutes. Vegetables are done when brown on the edges and tender enough to eat.
I’ve tried for a couple of seasons to grow Brussels sprouts, always with the same result – aphids! Last year I literally spent around $40 in ladybugs to take care of the aphid problem. The ladybugs ate the aphids off of my rose bushes just fine but when it came to the Brussels sprouts, the aphids remained. It left me wondering – do ladybugs hate Brussels sprouts too? Maybe this year, instead of buying ladybugs to take care of aphids on my roses, I could just plant Brussels sprouts instead.
And, while you prepare your “tiny cabbages”, here is some food for thought. Don’t be afraid to try things again, even if you didn’t enjoy them in the past. Just because you didn’t like something before, doesn’t mean you can’t or wouldn’t like it now in a new or different way. And just because you tried something in the past and didn’t like it but you could like it now, doesn’t mean you have to be beholden to your past of not liking it. It doesn’t invalidate your past feelings, it just sheds new light on them. Think of the poor Brussels sprout. It’s only crime, most of the time, is being poorly prepared.