Golden-Crusted Brussels Sprouts

There are a couple of things guaranteed to bug me:

• people who are so busy reading their cell phones while walking that they can’t watch where they’re going;
• winter;
• using the word impact to mean influence;
• telemarketers;
• the trivialization of the original “Keep Calm and Carry On” posters… keychains, mugs and other trinkets (so overdone!); and
• misspelling the word(s) Brussels sprouts as seen here.

Okay, more than a couple, but I’ll stop this from being an eight-page long entry.

Does it help to know that the reason these vegetables are called Brussels sprouts is that Brussels, the capital of Belgium, is where they first grew the modern sprout? I hope so.

Pan frying is a great alternative to oven-roasting Brussels sprouts… a good method to have available when the oven is full of other baking goodies.

Here’s what happens.

Grab the Brussels sprouts.

Brussels sprouts.

Brussels sprouts.

Cut them in half and trim them too.

Trimmed and halved.

Trimmed and halved.

Toss them in a bowl with a tablespoon of olive oil.

Tossing  Brussels sprouts with olive oil.

Tossing Brussels sprouts with olive oil.

Place all the sprouts in a fry pan, cut side down.

Cut side down.

Cut side down.

After 5 minutes of cooking.

Browning.

Browning.

Toss, turn up the heat and continue to cook the Brussels sprouts until they look like this.

Cooked.

Cooked.

Meanwhile, grate some Parmesan cheese.

Grate the Parmesan.

Grate the Parmesan.

Golden-crusted Brussels Sprouts.

Golden-crusted Brussels Sprouts.

Golden-crusted Brussels Sprouts.

Here’s where I found this recipe:
http://www.101cookbooks.com/archives/goldencrusted-brussels-sprouts-recipe.html


Golden-Crusted Brussels Sprouts

This is the only way to eat Brussels sprouts: cut in half and cooked until deliciously tender inside and perfectly brown and crusted on the outside.

Use Brussels sprouts that are on the small size and tightly closed. You can finish these with many different types of cheese but I tend to go for Parmesan when the weather is good. I trade that in for heavier cheeses like Gruyere or Gouda in colder weather. I finished them off with some toasted hazelnuts the other night – delicious!

24 small Brussels sprouts
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for rubbing
fine-grain sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup grated cheese of your choice

Wash the Brussels sprouts well. Trim the stem ends and remove any raggy outer leaves. Cut in half from stem to top and gently rub each half with olive oil, keeping it intact (or if you are lazy just toss them in a bowl with a glug of olive oil).

Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in your largest skillet over medium heat. Don’t overheat the skillet, or the outsides of the Brussels sprouts will cook too quickly. Place the Brussels sprouts in the pan flat side down (single-layer), sprinkle with a couple pinches of salt, cover, and cook for roughly 5 minutes; the bottoms of the sprouts should only show a hint of browning. Cut into or taste one of the sprouts to gauge whether they’re tender throughout. If not, cover and cook for a few more minutes.

Once just tender, uncover, turn up the heat, and cook until the flat sides are deep brown and caramelized. Use a metal spatula to toss them once or twice to get some browning on the rounded side. Season with more salt, a few grinds of pepper, and a dusting of grated cheese. While you might be able to get away with keeping a platter of these warm in the oven for a few minutes, they are exponentially tastier if popped in your mouth immediately.

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