The Oft-Maligned Brussels Sprout

I’m so glad to see that Brussels sprouts are starting to regain their street cred lately.  Cooked properly, Brussels sprouts are a complete departure from the realm of vegetables and have an enigmatic savory taste that’s hard to define; the texture is crisp yet sultry; they melt in your mouth leaving scant traces of nuttiness and fresh air.  Cooked improperly, of course, they taste of cat sick.

To that end, I’m pleased to present a wonderful article on the art of braising Brussels sprouts from one of my favorite blogs, Cooking for Engineers.  If you enjoy Alton Brown (and, really, who doesn’t?), you’ll enjoy Cooking for Engineers.  They even offer helpful pictures of the cooking process along the way.

Avoiding it at all costs (having remembered the horror stories), I never tasted this mini-cabbage until after I left college. Believe it or not, after first tasting them, I thought Brussels sprouts were delicious! What had I been missing out on? Why did everyone complain about these wonderful tasting vegetables and why was it the butt of many jokes in American family sitcoms? I’m not sure, but I think it might have to do with overcooking (which can release noxious smells). Forget the Brussels sprouts of your past and try this fast, simple, and flavorful preparation.

Read the entire entry, along with recipe, here:  Braised Brussels Sprouts.

sprouts.jpg

Now, don’t those look good?

UPDATE:  And as if the good folks at Serious Eats read my mind, here’s another fantastic recipe for Brussels sprouts that was just posted tonight:  Balsamic Glazed Brussels Sprouts.  Yum!

9 responses to “The Oft-Maligned Brussels Sprout

  1. Do you ever use frozen? Engineers uses fresh and doesn’t say anything about using frozen. Your experience?

  2. I’ve never tried frozen, personally. And I don’t believe that my mother has, either (she’s the queen of Brussels sprouts). We tend to have a plethora of fresh Brussels sprouts available here in Houston, so it’s never really been an issue.

    I imagine they’d be fine, just like most frozen veggies. The only thing I’d worry about is ice getting trapped between their little cabbagey leaves and that turning into excess, unwanted moisture while cooking.

    One more thing that’s delicious is to add a little bit of sauteed pancetta and some freshly-ground black pepper — and a good dollop of heavy cream, if you’re into that kind of thing — to the braised Brussels sprouts after they’re done cooking. Mix it around a bit so the sprouts are coated in the cream and pancetta, then serve. Soooooo delicious. 😀

  3. Lenny Lovehandles

    “enigmatic savory taste that’s hard to define” Let me try. Old man’s sweaty socks.

  4. You are a Philistine, my friend. A Philistine!

  5. I have been known to buy a couple of handsfull of Brussels Sprouts and cook them and eat them just with some salt, pepper and lemon juice, all by myself. Not often. But sometimes.

  6. I like mine with black butter

  7. Brussels sprouts with…apples, licorice, lemon and sugar? Are we talking about the same black butter here? If so: eeeew. But to each their own, I guess. 🙂

  8. no, browned butter with vinegar et S&P

  9. Heh. Okay, that sounds much, much better. 😀

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