Roasting Brussels sprouts until they are deeply browned and their outer leaves have crisped is one of the most enticing ways to cook them. The method has turned around countless Brussels sprout naysayers, including my husband, who gobbles them up prepared this way but cannot stand them steamed.
The accompanying recipe builds on that trusty basic, adding easy flourish and flavors that accentuate and complement the vegetable. After roasting the sprouts, which were simply drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with salt, you toss them with toasted sunflower seeds to highlight the vegetable's nutty undertone. Then you add diced fresh apple, which adds contrasting sweet freshness and color.
A vinaigrette made with apple cider vinegar, grainy mustard and a touch of honey ties the elements together and lends a bright punch to the sprouts' earthiness. It's such an effortless, healthful side dish, yet it yields a multitude of pleasure. Serve alongside roasted meat or poultry, or atop a smear of hummus.
• Ellie Krieger is a registered dietitian, nutritionist and author who hosts public television's "Ellie's Real Good Food." She blogs and offers a weekly newsletter at www.elliekrieger.com.
Roasted Brussels Sprouts With Apple and Sunflower Seeds
– From nutritionist and cookbook author Ellie Krieger.
1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved lengthwise
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons hulled, unsalted sunflower seeds
1 1/2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon whole-grain mustard
1/2 teaspoon honey
1/3 cup diced red apple (1/4-inch pieces; unpeeled)
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Place the Brussels sprouts on a rimmed baking sheet, and then toss them with 1 tablespoon of the oil and the salt. Roast (middle rack) for 30 to 40 minutes, until they are deep golden brown, crisp on the outside and tender on the inside.
Meanwhile, place the sunflower seeds on a small baking sheet, place in the oven (lower rack) and toast for 6 to 8 minutes, until fragrant. Let cool.
Whisk together the remaining tablespoon of oil, the vinegar, mustard and honey in a liquid measuring cup, to form an emulsified vinaigrette.
Once the Brussels sprouts are done, transfer them to a serving bowl. Toss with the apple, sunflower seeds and dressing; serve right away.
• Nutrition per serving: 140 calories, 5 g protein, 13 g carbohydrates, 9 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 105 mg sodium, 5 g dietary fiber, 4 g sugar