Ok, so chicken two ways may be a little deceptive, but it seemed like the best way to describe how I fix a vegetarian/omnivore-friendly dinner. However, the meat was not the inspiration behind dinner the other night — the brussels sprouts were. Just like a really fabulous pair of shoes often inspires a great outfit, I believe a memorable meal can arise from a great veggie idea.
I love brussels sprouts, seriously. Hands down, they are my favorite vegetable. I never had them growing up since my Dad isn’t a fan, but at some point in college I came across the veggie in the freezer section and my life forever changed. Funny enough, I’ve discovered that a lot of people my age really like brussels sprouts and they seem to appear on menus more often.
My favorite way to prepare, and the easiest way in my opinion, brussels sprouts is by roasting them. I found a great recipe for roasted brussels sprouts with caramelized onions and went to town building out the rest of the meal.
Here are some tips for making some amazing roasted brussels sprouts:
- Half the sprouts and be generous with olive oil and salt and pepper. They can be really bland (like cabbage), so be sure and season well.
- Throw in some scallions or onions to add some more flavor.
- Roast in stages, and add a little more oil each round. The first round, bake them for 15 min. with just the olive oil and salt and pepper. Second round, flip the sprouts and add the scallions, baked for 10 min. Last round, sprinkle a little brown sugar and vermouth, bake for 7-10 min.
- That’s right, use vermouth. Great advice from Cooking Light to add a little herbiness and brightness.
Since the oven would already be on, I decided to bake a chicken breast and a chik’n cutlet with a little lemon pepper seasoning and olive oil. For the starch, couscous with toasted pine nuts and parmesan to round out the rustic plate.
Lucky for me, my meat-eating dinner companion also has an unnatural love for brussels sprouts and could appreciate the inspiration behind the meal.