Crisp air is battling it out with sticky humidity for fall supremacy. One day I’m pulling out a blanket for the soccer sidelines, the next I’m wondering if I can really keep wearing the same pair of shorts for the rest of the year. No wonder my brain is swirling with thoughts like the fallen leaves in our yard.
It’s been more than a week, and I still feel tired from the Byte of Texas conference. It’s not just the actual act of organizing the thing (I had tons of amazing help) but the work of being “on” all weekend, which completely wipes out introverts.
The other big thing in my brain, the one that has been rattling around the most, is that odd now what? feeling. My to-do list is packed, but suddenly no longer spending 20-40 hours a week on something is a bit discombobulating. September and October smack of turning points in my career, and as a freelancer, navigating what I want is trickier than anticipated.
Fortunately, there is always refuge for me in the kitchen, in the chopping of vegetables, the sizzling in the pan, and the triumph of a meal that didn’t involve the drive-though. Some days even that familiarity is daunting, but once I grab ingredients and the cutting board, it flows into place.
Some of my friends say they’re over Brussels sprouts, but for those of us who didn’t truly discover them until the past five years or so, we say to bring ’em on. And frankly, it’s weird to get worked up over having a vegetable on the menu that people consistently order. Do we really need to shame people because they like Brussels sprouts? Haven’t Brussels sprouts suffered enough at the hands of our boil-obsessed ancestors?
This recipe is one of my go-to side dishes because it’s quick and full of flavor contrasts: sweet cranberries, creamy walnuts, and slightly bitter sprouts. Plus it’s vegan so you can feel comfortable serving it to a large crowd (though you can always add bacon or pancetta for the carnivore set).
Smaller Brussels sprouts work best when you’re sautéing them quickly, so if yours are a bit large be sure to quarter rather than halve them. This will help ensure you get some of that lovely caramelization on each piece.
Brussels Sprouts with Walnuts and Cranberries
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 pound Brussels sprouts washed, trimmed, and halved
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- Heat olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. When oil shimmers, add Brussels sprouts, salt, and pepper and stir to coat.
- Cook sprouts for approximately 10 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Add walnuts and cranberries and cook for another 5 minutes, until sprouts are caramelized. Serve immediately.
More brussels sprouts recipes you might like:
Brussels Sprouts Crostini – Stetted
Cranberry Pomegranate Brussels with Gorgonzola – My Kitchen Addiction
Roasted Brussels Sprout and Red Cabbage Pizza – Oh My Veggies
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Apple and Bacon – Melanie Makes
This recipe previously appeared in the September/October 2013 issue of Hobby Farms.
For more meatless inspiration, check out my Vegetarian board on Pinterest!
Follow Megan Myers | Stetted’s board Vegetarian on Pinterest.