In praise of Brussels sprouts!
It’s the time of year when Brussels sprouts make their way onto our plates. Loved by some, hated by others, this mini ‘concentrated cabbage’ is one of the healthiest vegetables we can eat. Amongst many benefits, these little cruciferous vegetables (broccoli and cabbage also fall into this group) contain alpha-lipoic, which has shown to lower blood glucose levels and increase insulin sensitivity.
High in fibre (good for supporting the digestive system) they are also a rich source of vitamins A, C and K and contain folate, potassium, manganese and vitamin B-6; their glucosinolates can help in the prevention of unwanted inflammation in the body and aid in reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease. An efficient provider of vegetable protein, they are a great substitute for red meat at least one-day per week, while because of their unique composition of antioxidants they may help prevent cancer by promoting the elimination of potential carcinogens from the body, so also a great way for regular red meat-eaters to perhaps off-set some longer-term risks.
Three easy ways to enjoy them:
1. Roast – toss the sprouts with olive oil, salt and pepper and roast for 30-40 minutes.
2. Steam – cut the sprouts in half and steam until tender. Then add lemon juice, salt, pepper and feta cheese.
3. Blanch and sauté – blanch the sprouts in boiling water for 5 minutes, then place in ice bath. In a pan, sauté with garlic and shallots, add a dash of balsamic vinegar. Finish off with a sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
This quintessential Christmas vegetable is also great in slaws or salad for a different spin on the festive season.
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