Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Become a Convert
Any article in a food magazine or post out in the blogosphere about brussels sprouts will start with some kind of encouragement. "You may think you don't like brussels sprouts," they will tell you, "But let me convince you to change your mind."
I was totally one of those people. I like almost every single vegetable out there, but didn't like those little cabbages. Because they aren't really a "go to" vegetable for most people, I actually hadn't really eaten them that many times. My mom never made them (probably because she knew we wouldn't eat them), friends never made them, I certainly never made them. The one time I can recall eating them in recent memory was at a friend's for Sunday dinner and I really hated the few bites I was able to choke down. They were whole and undercooked so chalky texture and foul flavor. I firmly put them in my dislike category.
Then, for some reason, last year I decided to make them for Thanksgiving. Maybe it was the article in Bon Appetit, maybe it was the addition of caramelized shallots, maybe it was the fact that the brussels sprouts themselves are thinly sliced instead of whole. I don't know - but I'm glad I branched out. These are, really truly, delicious. And yes, they will convert brussels sprouts haters - they converted my husband and he really holds on to his food aversions. My brother Michael (one of those rare individuals who love brussels sprouts) points out that anything with a bunch of butter in it tastes good, but I beg to differ. I made these yesterday to go with Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie and dialed the amount of butter way down and then were still incredibly tasty. Trust me. They will be on our table next Thursday.
Brussels Sprout Hash with Caramelized Shallots
Adapted from Bon Appetit Magazine
I made some changes here. I cut the amount of butter in half and upped the shallots. I also changed the method a bit. Be sure to use a big enough pan so that the sprouts get browned sufficiently. You can use a food processor to slice the sprouts - that is, if your baby didn't abscond with the feed tube pusher.
3 tbsp. butter, divided
3/4 lb. shallots, thinly sliced
Coarse kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
4 tsp. sugar
1 1/2 lb. brussels sprouts, trimmed
1/4 - 1/2 cup water
Halve brussels sprouts lengthwise. Cut lengthwise into thin slices. Set aside.
Melt 2 tbsp. butter in large skillet over medium heat. Add shallots; sprinkle with coarse kosher salt and pepper. Saute until golden, about 10 minutes. Add vinegar and sugar. Stir until brown and glazed, about 3 minutes. Scrape onto a plate and reserve. Wipe out skillet carefully with a paper towel.
Place skillet back over burner. Increase heat to medium-high. Add enough olive oil to lightly coat the bottom. Add sprouts; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Saute until brown at the edges, about 6 minutes. Add 1/4 cup water and 1 tbsp. butter. Saute until the water evaporates and sprouts are tender, adding more water if necessary. Add shallots. Season to taste with salt and pepper.