However, we now know that brussels sprouts are one of a handful of the superfoods sometimes known as "The Mighty Cruciferous" (which actually sounds like a losing sports team to me), and that they are worth eating, if only we can get them past our tastebuds.
Being somewhat distinctive in shape and texture, they are hard to disguise. I've cut them into tiny ribbons for salad, but as soon as my suspicious family took the first bite, the jig was up. Even I must admit, that salad was not my favorite.
I've tried battering them and sending them for a swim in the deep fryer, served up with a side of ketchup. This iteration was also soundly rejected, although I enjoyed the resulting 6 servings of leftovers more than I enjoyed eating the leftover salad.
Enter a food that even a picky toddler can love: bacon. Two years ago, scientists released a study showing that although the price of bacon had nearly doubled, consumption had remained constant. This is what is known by economists as inelastic demand. In other words, bacon has the economic properties of crack.
In my delicious preparation, you take an old cookie sheet lined with foil (because it's not "winning" if you have to clean up bacon grease), and lay down four strips of bacon. Turn the oven to 450 and put the bacon in (put the bacon in a cold oven - no preheating - win!).
Meanwhile, rinse the brussels sprouts, cut off the stem end, pull off any yellow outer leaves and cut each sprout in half.
Within 15-20 minutes, the bacon should be crispy, and the cookie sheet should be covered in fat. Remove the bacon (place it on a paper towel to dry) and put the brussels spouts and any separated leaves on the cookie sheet. Stir until they are coated in bacon grease, then put them back in the oven. In about another 15-20 minutes, you will have brussels spouts so delicious that you will struggle not to eat them all yourself. Salt lightly if needed, and serve.
The leftover bacon is a moral question that only you can answer. In a perfect world, it would be crumbled on top of the brussels spouts, adding extra crispy goodness to this most delicious of cruciferous vegetables. In the real world however, note that the spouts in my photos have no bacon at all. Oops.
Family eating superfood: WIN!
Two ingredient recipe: WIN!
Easy cleanup: WIN!
Four leftover pieces of crispy bacon: WIN!
Go team cruciferous!
If you would like to see my recipes, tips and adventures in cooking every week go to www.ucancook.net and enter your email on the right side. Alternatively, email me at email@example.com and I will set you up!