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Sep 23, 2010
Season of sprouts
Burpee  Edible Gardening Team Members

If you’ve become accustomed to hauling in harvest, and are not yet ready to give up your garden, be sure to plant Brussels Sprouts to extend your vegetable garden enjoyment.

Wait, wait, hold on! Don’t click away so fast! Sure, sprouts are consistently named to “most hated vegetable” lists, but most naysayers are concerned with this veggie's strong smell and bitter taste. But we have a trick to getting better flavor and sweetness from your sprouts – hit ’em with a bit of frost!

That’s right. These mini-cabbage heads actually improve in taste when exposed to freezing temperatures. Burpee varieties like Franklin and new Royal Marvel can be enjoyed cooked or raw. However, take note: This is definitely a long-season crop, so you have to commit to a lengthy growing season (plant in spring, harvest in fall) if you live in northern climates. For gardeners in mild-weather states, you can grow your Brussels Sprout plants as a fall or winter crop and harvest throughout the winter.

To harvest Brussels Sprouts, pick the lowest sprouts on the stem and remove the accompanying leaves (without removing the top foliage). Twist the sprouts off the stem, gathering only as many as you need at one time. The remaining sprouts will keep on the plants through part of the winter (you can even pick when snow’s on the ground!).

Store your sprouts in the refrigerator for up to three weeks, or steam, boil or cook them in recipes like the ones found here. How ever you prepare them, Brussels Sprouts offer a long season of gardening, and a high-nutrition choice when expanding your vegetable-growing palatte.

Reader Comments (1)
Okay, I'm one of those people that have hated brussel sprouts ever since I was a kid and until last fall have successfully avoided them throughout adulthood. When a friend brought me an extra stalk from her weekly CSA delivery, I decided to be a big boy and give them another shot. I searched online and found a recipe from Barefoot Contessa - roasted brussel sprouts. I am now a convert! They were terrific. Roasting carmalizes the juices and adds the needed sweetness - kosher salt provides a salty balance! And, they are easy. Toss the sprouts in a bit of olive oil and spread in a single layer on a large baking sheet - sprinkle lightly with salt. Roast in a 400 degree oven for 30 - 40 minutes, shaking and tossing the pan every 10. Once they are tender, sprinkle with a bit more salt and serve!!
Thursday, September 30, 2010 | Larry
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