Balsamic Brussel Sprouts with Grapes



Definitely one of the Star Trek outer space variety of vegetables.

Tiny cabbage-like heads on stalks, these at the Farmers Market have had their giant leaves removed.  Usually Brussel sprouts are harvested after a frost which sweetens these cruciferous buddies.  Years when I have grown them I left them in the garden well into December and the snowy season, then would stomp out into the drifts to harvest the adorable little aliens for the holiday meals.




I made this dish for a wedding dinner so beforehand I wanted to experiment with partially pre-cooking and slicing the sprouts then roasting them a day later.

It worked well and I would recommend most of this process if you need to prep ahead of time but my main advice would be this: after you blanch them DO NOT slice them in half until a time close to when you’re ready to roast and serve them.  The morning of this wedding I discovered that some of the cores of the Brussel sprouts had discolored, probably from oxygen exposure.  They weren’t bad tasting but visually were not something I wanted to serve for a wedding.  After spending way too much time scooping out some of the darkened cores I promptly ran down to the Farmer’s Market and got another pile of replacement sprouts.




This might be another holiday dish to try, the sprouts can be blanched (but not sliced!) ahead of time then roasted with the grapes when you’re ready for the meal. The sweetness of the grapes might help with convincing a non-brussel sprout eater to try at least a mini scoop.


Happy Thanksgiving!



Balsamic Brussel Sprouts with Grapes

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes to par-boil, 30 minutes to roast


Heat water on the stove, when it boils add:

3 cups Brussel Sprouts

Cook for 4 or 5 minutes then drain and slice in half, or refrigerate if you’re prepping them a day ahead then slice when ready to use. 

Slice in half: 

2 cup Grapes, sliced in half


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 

Toss together:

3 cups Brussel Sprout halves

2 cups Grape halves

2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

1 Tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar

Sea Salt

Black Pepper, freshly ground

Spread the mixture on a cookie sheet and roast approximately 30 – 40 minutes .

Remove when sprouts are slightly browned.

Melt then drizzle on the roasted sprouts and grapes:

2 Tablespoons Butter, salted

1 teaspoon Fresh Thyme, chopped

Serve warm. 



This new addition to the knife family came from visiting a rendezvous this summer—a hand-forged knife by Fred Bruner of Bruner Blades in Wisconsin.




More piles of sprouts at last month’s early morning Market.




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