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On roasting things

I was in the checkout line at Whole Foods on Saturday, and the woman ahead of me in line noted that I had two bags of brussels sprouts. “Do you ever roast them?” she asked. I replied that I usually did the same old boring thing — steamed them, then seasoned them with olive oil and butter. She declared that, when brussels sprouts are roasted, people who normally wouldn’t dare touch a brussels sprout find that they like them. Ken likes brussels sprouts, but he said that the roasted brussels sprouts were the best he’s ever had.

It’s good to remember that many vegetables like to be roasted. It’s easy to do, and it’s healthy, because it keeps the vegetables out of water.

Brussels sprouts are not a fashionable or well-liked vegetable, but that’s a shame, because they’re delicious. They’re also inexpensive. They ought to be a staple in the winter kitchen. Buy them fresh. Frozen brussels sprouts have been drowned in water.

I enjoy cooking during the winter more than I do during the summer. The summer produce is wonderful, but I love winter produce — root vegetables, cabbage, brussels sprouts, onions, cauliflower, broccoli. Maybe it’s my Irish genes. Given a choice between eating fresh tropical fruit on Maui (fantastic), or winter vegetables in Ireland, I’d choose Ireland.

The other thing that’s nice about cooking and baking during the winter is that the warmth of the kitchen is comforting rather than oppressive. Winter cooking makes me wish that I still lived in a house with a wood-fired cook stove. There’s nothing quite like it.

Quartered, tossed in olive oil with garlic, and ready for the oven


  1. Quetal wrote:


    I roast sweet potatoes regularly this time of year. Same recipe but I add Herbs de Provence and a 1/4 teaspoon salt

    Tuesday, December 21, 2010 at 1:19 pm | Permalink
  2. Quetal wrote:

    Sliced into rounds that is

    Tuesday, December 21, 2010 at 1:19 pm | Permalink
  3. mountain madness wrote:

    I do mine the same way both the sweet potatoes and the sprouts. Another way I like to prepare my brussel sprouts is on the grill. You can leave them whole or cut them but I wrap them in foil and season with olive oil and butter and some herbs and put them on the grill about 15 minutes prior to the meat and they are fantastic! It’s like steaming them and roasting them at the same time….. Living in Florida we grill often and I like to cook as much on the grill as possible… keep the mess outside… LOL

    Thursday, December 23, 2010 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

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