Although I have an effusing love for all winter vegetables, the historically picked-on brussels sprout holds a special place in my heart. Neither cucurbita nor root vegetable, this stand-alone guy needs someone to have its back! Correction: needed. Now, a new preparation for the sidelined vegetable has elevated its status to most popular at the table.
Whether the thin crispy shreds are generated by mandoline or sliced by hand, the hash-like consistency of a shredded brussels sprout has suddenly become cool, reassigning its traditional whole-baked preparation to an old and farty distant cousin. And topped with a fried egg? Could not be trendier. These shredded sprouts are popping up all over New York City on brunch and dinner menus alike.
So, what's so wonderful about these tiny (and now established, shredded chic) cabbages? They're nuanced with flavor subtleties, perfected in this Crispy Brussels Sprout Hash with Cider Glaze dish. The brilliance of this recipe lies in the flavors that you only just taste—a slightly nutty brussels sprout, a barely there warmth from a toasted hazelnut, a tangy apple punch that's tempered by the bitter sprout. Each bite unmasks an enchanting conduit of complementary tastes, carefully crafted— but chew slowly, or it might pass you by.
The reduced cider glaze is so enticing, it's hard to resist from drinking the leftovers by the spoonful. I recommend saving it for the next time you oven-roast vegetables. Using apples two ways, the hearty cider glaze ads a signature caramelized sweetness and shout out to autumn's favorite fruit. If you have access to the NYC Greenmarket, I highly recommend using Red Jacket Orchard's Spiced Apple Cider. Cold-pressed, unfiltered, and sans added sugar, the fresh juice is about as close to eating whole fruit as you can get. Plus, the mulling spices add wonderful subtle hints of cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.
While the word "hash" usually immediate conjures an association with "unhealthy", this recipe is quite the opposite. When it comes to nutrients, brussels sprouts earn an A+. Containing sulforaphane (hello anti-cancer properties), vitamin C (goodbye oxidative stress), plus good sources of dietary fiber, vitamin A, folate, potassium, and manganese, whether you eat this dish for breakfast or as a main meal side, know you're starting off on the right foot.
This recipe hails from Clean Plates. What is it? Think Zagat's with a healthy twist. On a mission to equip New Yorkers with a direct link to the most sustainable restaurants in NYC, Clean Plates rates restaurants by both the taste of their food and the quality of their ingredients. Whether you're using their published guide, website or iphone app, Clean Plates' search filters like gluten-free, flexitarian, and organic meat have all dietary preferences covered.
Crispy Brussels Sprout Hash with Cider Glaze (from Clean Plates)
"3 Reasons You Should Be Eating Brussel Sprouts." FitDay. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Nov. 2012. <http://www.fitday.com/fitness-articles/nutrition/healthy-eating/3-reasons-you-should-be-eating-brussel-sprouts.html#b>.
"Brussels Sprouts, Cooked, Boiled, Drained, without Salt." SELF Nutrition Data. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Nov. 2012. <http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/vegetables-and-vegetable-products/2363/2>.