Monday, January 31, 2011

How we like our cruciferous vegetables

Cabbage. Collard Greens. Broccoli. Brussels Sprouts. You know they're good for you, but can you hold your nose long enough to choke them down?

We used to feel that way too. But somehow, we in the JunkHouse have found ourselves not only tolerating cruciferous vegetables, but enjoying them. JunkMale now really enjoys both broccoli and brussels sprouts. I am fond of collards, broccoli, and brussels sprouts, and Pearl loves cabbage, collards, and broccoli. Luna will eat them all. :-)

So how did we come to change our minds? I think it was because I learned new ways of cooking them that appealed to our palate. I realize not everyone enjoys the same foods as we do, but hopefully this list of recipes will help you, too, learn to enjoy the many health benefits of cruciferous vegetables.


We mostly eat napa cabbage, which I used to make kimchi. Kimchi isn't for everyone, so I'm willing to let that one slide. :-) But before we discovered Pearl's dairy problems, JuneMale and I used to really enjoy making colcannon. Mashed potatoes with bacon (and cabbage). What's not to like? :-D

Collard Greens

I'll admit that I used to hate these. But this recipe has changed my mind. I add 1 Tbs of brown sugar to them and leave out the red pepper flakes. Oh, and I double the bacon. :-D


Broccoli noodles. What else can I say? This has been a staple in our house ever since I saw the recipe posted at The Common Room. We've tweaked it in the years since then, and it continues to be a consistent performer on our menus.

But if you don't like broccoli noodles or have a peanut allergy in your family, you could always try drowning your broccoli in a cheese sauce. This was my favorite way to eat broccoli growing up. Yum, yum yum! It works well on cauliflower, too, but JunkMale hasn't gotten up the nerve to let me serve him cauliflower yet. ;-)

Brussels Sprouts

I used to hate these. JunkMale used to hate these. So why are they a favorite of ours now? I credit the Barefoot Contessa, who first turned me on to the idea of oven roasted brussels sprouts. They taste a bit like sweet, green oven fries, and they are absolutely wonderful. Caveat: the smaller the brussels sprouts, the better they taste. Large brussels sprouts tend to be bitter and not-so-tasty. Brussels sprouts from your backyard garden are To. Die. For. If you've never tried brussels sprouts this way, you owe it to yourself to try it at least once.

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4 have poured out their souls in electronic text:

  • Birdie

    I love most of those veggies! I also love cauliflower and mustard greens. I guess that you tend to continue enjoying the stuff that you grew up with.

  • Sherry

    We have sure enjoyed all of your new recipes for greens. But I am a fan from way back, husband not so much. Anything that will get him to eat his veggies is a winner.

  • Harmony

    Daddy ate greens?!

  • Laura

    Another vote of approval for the collards recipe here... I made it a little more like the recipe you linked... just 3 slices of bacon, and I added crushed red pepper... but I added 1Tbs brown sugar like you did, and then I added 1 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar. It was perfect.

    I'm thinking this and some cornbread would be an AMAZING breakfast for someone like me who likes hot, savory foods for breakfast.