One of the great powers of food is its ability to bring many different types of people together. As I was considering the subject for this blog post, I chose to share the recipe for these sweet and spicy roasted brussels sprouts for that very reason.
At the beginning of 2019, I decided to go to the Metabolic Health Summit at the Renaissance Long Beach Hotel. Truth be told, I had already purchased a ticket and had forgotten all about it. So in the rush to make travel plans, I saw that one of my favorite bio-hackers on Instagram, Katie Egle-Newman (@theketokatie), would be attending as well. I love all of her Instagram posts, so I sent her a message to see if she wanted to meet at the conference. Once I got talking to her, she told me about the Fire and Ice Retreat that is organized at by The Point Retreats and hosted by Thaddeus Owen (@primalhacker on Instagram).
Fire and Ice is a multi-day cold thermogenesis and heat shock retreat held deep in the peninsulas of rural Minnesota. The aim of participating is to learn how cold therapy can boost your metabolic rate, reduce inflammation and pain, and help you absorb more light. During the event, there are all kinds of activities like seminars, cold lake plunges, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, and learning about cold thermogenesis protocols. You know I'm an avid learner, and I'm always seeking out the latest knowledge that could help my clients or me on our respective healing journeys, so this was right up my alley. If you want to learn more about this amazing retreat, head to https://thepointretreats.com/retreats#/event/105/fire-and-ice-cold-thermogenesis-and-heat-shock-2020.
Once I heard the details, I just had to go! A bunch of bio-hackers, a frozen lake, learning about cold thermogenesis (cold-adapting), and a paleo/keto/carnivore menu -- what more is there to ask for?
When the time for the retreat came, I met up with Katie once again in Minnesota to caravan up to the retreat together. On the way to the middle of nowhere-ville Minnesota, we stopped at Katie's favorite gastro-pub and inhaled a version of these amazingly sweet and spicy brussels sprouts. I got to hear all about how Katie is raising her strapping young boys on a keto plan and how it has helped her and her husband.
Every time I've made these brussels sprouts since, I think about the time I flew away to an icy land, fueled my body with the best fare (bomb-tasting brussels sprouts), and jumped in a frozen lake. This recipe will add a much-needed spark to your summer and winter diets, and fuel your body for all those cold plunges you're going to be doing!
Source: adapted from www.food52.com
Yield: Serves 4 to 6 people, as a side dish
1/2 cup cilantro leaves
2 tablespoons very thinly sliced cilantro stems
3 tablespoons chopped mint
1/2 cup fish sauce
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
2 tablespoons lime juice usually one lime
1/4 cup honey or coconut nectar
1 garlic clove minced
1 anaheim, Fresno, or serrano chili seeds removed, thinly sliced
2 pounds brussels sprouts small is best for taste
2 tablespoons avocado oil
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Make the dressing by combining all ingredients except the brussels sprouts, cilantro, and avocado oil. Combine the fish sauce, water, vinegar, lime juice, honey, garlic, and chiles in a medium-sized bowl. Set aside to allow the flavors time to meld.
This vinaigrette will keep for up to a week sealed in the refrigerator.
Prepare the brussels sprouts by peeling away loose or damaged leaves. Trim the ends of the stems and then cut the sprouts in half.
A Note Here: If you wash or rinse the brussels sprouts, you must dry them very well so they roast in the oven. If they are too wet, they will steam, rather than roast, while cooking in the oven.
Toss the brussels sprouts with 2 tablespoons of avocado oil. Spread out evenly in a single layer in a large cast-iron skillet or on a large stoneware baking sheet.
Roast for 10 minutes in the heated oven with the cut faces down. Then, add additional oil if needed, stir the sprouts, and roast for an additional 15 minutes. Toss every 3-4 minutes so that they turn out evenly roasted and brown.
Remove the brussels sprouts from the oven once they're roasted to perfection, and transfer the warm sprouts to a large bowl and toss with the vinaigrette. Dress with cilantro leaves and serve. And enjoy!