Monday, September 17, 2007

Delicious Brussels sprouts

Brussels sprouts can be ghastly. They suffer mightily from overcooking. Oh the dreadful things I ate in England under the guise of Brussels sprouts!

Fortunately the Brussels sprout can easily be redeemed into a delicious vegetable when properly handled. I discovered how delicious they can be after reading an article two years ago in Fine Cooking about roasting vegetables. Then one year my sister-in-law turned up at Thanksgiving dinner with Brussels sprouts cooked with pancetta and chicken stock.

Here are the two recipes I like:

Roasted Brussels Sprouts:
1 lb or so bag of Brussels sprouts
3T olive oil
salt to taste
black pepper or lemon pepper to taste.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Trim the tough ends off of the Brussels sprouts. In a pyrex baking dish mix the Brussels sprouts with the olive oil, salt and pepper. Cook 40 minutes or so until they are browned and crisp on the outside and slide off of a fork easily when pierced. The outer leaves will darken and get very crisp like potato chips. Put more salt on them if you like.

This second recipe that my sister-in-law brought to TG is courtesy of the gorgeous Giada de Laurentiis. It is a wonderful way to sneak some green vegetables into one's diet. I sometimes put bacon in it instead of pancetta. It's good either way. In fact, doesn't bacon make everything better?

Brussels Sprouts w/ Pancetta:
1 pound fresh Brussels sprouts, trimmed
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 ounces paper-thin slices pancetta, coarsely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup low-salt chicken broth

Partially cook the Brussels sprouts in a large pot of boiling salted water, about 4 minutes. Drain.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add the pancetta and saute until beginning to crisp, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and saute until pale golden, about 2 minutes. Add the Brussels sprouts to the same skillet and saute until heated through and beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Add the broth and simmer until the broth reduces just enough to coat the Brussels sprouts, about 3 minutes. Serve.


Phil said...

Brussels sprouts rock!!!

See here for an Archer Pelican article on same:

When I was an undergrad, I co-oped with some friends, and we often cooked out of the New York Times Sunday Magazine recipes. I mention this only to recall my sad imitation of their beautiful recipe for Brussels sprouts cooked in a heavy cream with ginger.

One of my house/co-op mates, David Kamp, recently published The United States of Arugula.

durhamfood said...

Brussels Sprouts are awesome!

I really don't understand people who don't like them. As a kid, one of my favorite dishes was a real simple lightly-boiled sprouts quickly sauteed in breadcrumbs and olive oil with fresh black pepper. Simple and wonderful!