Friday Feast: Look, Mom.. Brussels Sprouts!

Last weekend I bought a bag of Brussels sprouts.  This isn’t an uncommon occurrence: I often buy vegetables I can’t stand with the hope that I’ll find time that week to find a recipe that changes my relationship with that food.  And my life.  Usually they sit in the ‘fridge for a week, turn funny colors and wrinkle, and I throw them away with a shrug.

“Guess I really hate those,” I’d think as drop them into the garbage can (and not a composter because we’re moving and currently have no garden but I know you were judging me).

“But you didn’t even try them..” an inner voice would protest.  And I’d step on my inner voice until it went back into submission.  She and I aren’t getting along most days because she has the annoying habit of being right all the time.

Tonight was different.

As I reached for the asparagus, meaning to pair it with a Gardein “chicken” breast I’d picked up at the store, I had to physically push the Brussels sprouts out of the way.  They weren’t looking sad yet, but they were going to soon.  And as my fingers barely grazed the bottom stems of my beloved asparagus, I decided tonight was the night.  I ate and enjoyed spinach tofu ice cream, for goodness’ sake.  I can handle a little green ball.

So, to the computer I went!  I found a lot of recipes, many of which just involved butter and roasting or steaming.  I’ve had them that way before.  Granted, this was before I decided I was a wannabe-vegan, but I didn’t want to be reminded of the full body shudder I’d experienced the first time I tried them.  Really, I’m such a sissy when it comes to foreign tastes in my mouth.  Or, used to be, I guess.

Brussels Sprouts - Cooking!

Mushrooms, red pepper, and Brussels sprouts? That's right. I ate them.

Until last night, I’d never even touched a raw Brussels sprout.  They’re very cute, now that I’ve had a chance to get acquainted.  Like tiny cabbages.  Or, tiny martian heads from Mars Attacks!

Attack of the Brussels Sprouts!

Sometimes I relate in the only way I know how: pop culture.

Enough of this, on to the recipe!

I found this at Fat Free Vegan.  And then I tweaked it, because I can’t just leave well enough alone.

Recipe: Brussels Sprout Stir-Fry

Ingredients

  • 1 pound Brussels sprouts, ends trimmed and halved
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 green onions, chopped
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, sliced (I used a whole one! The more the merrier with peppers, I think!)
  • 3-4 ounces shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and sliced (Honestly, I wouldn’t know a shiitake mushroom if it bit me. I used “regular” mushrooms I had in the ‘fridge. I’m sure they have a proper name, but right now it’s “mushroom.”)
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 tbsp. mirin (sweetened rice wine)
  • 1-2 tbsp. soy sauce (This was my first time using the soy sauce alternative from Briggs. Tasty!)
  • 2 tbsp. seasoned rice wine vinegar (or regular rice wine vinegar plus 1/2 tsp. sugar)

Instructions

  1. Spray or brush a non-stick wok or large skillet with a light coating of canola oil. Heat over medium-high heat, and add the garlic and green onions; stir and cook for one minute. Add the Brussels sprouts, turning them cut-side down. Cook until lightly browned, about 3 minutes.
  2. Add the red bell pepper, mushrooms, and baby corn, and stir well. Add the water and mirin and cover tightly. Reduce the heat and cook until the Brussels sprouts are tender but not overdone, about 5 minutes. (Add a little more water if necessary.)
  3. Remove the cover and add the soy sauce and rice wine vinegar. Cook and stir for about one minute. Add more soy sauce or rice wine vinegar to taste and serve hot.
Brussels Sprouts - Finished!

This photo is a victim of oh-my-gosh-it-smells-so-good-and-I'm-so-hungry-let-me-just-take-a-picture-on-my-phone-I'm-sure-that-will-do-fine syndrome. Don't let that happen to you.

And the best part?  After I ate I ran out for crafting supplies and, when I came home, the entire house smelled like garlic and soy sauce.  It’s so good.

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