Food | Oregon | Laurie Wolf's Recipes

Brussels Sprouts, Six Ways

OPB | Dec. 20, 2013 midnight | Updated: March 27, 2014 10:49 a.m.

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If Brussels sprouts have a less-than-stellar reputation among American eaters, the leafy greens themselves are not the culprit. Placed in the right hands, these miniature cabbages pack a wallop not only in vitamins and nutrients, but also in flavor and texture, too.

We asked some of Portland’s finest chefs to send us their favorite Brussels sprout recipes. What they sent us reflect the myriad ways to make these edible buds the centerpiece of a tasty dish — using techniques ranging from frying to roasting to using the raw leaves, and in styles that include Southern and Asian cooking.


Salad of Brussels Sprout Leaves with Crispy Fried Shallots, Toasted Walnuts & Lemon Vinaigrette from Kathryn LaSusa Yeomans
Kathryn Yeomans

You can often spot Kathryn LaSusa Yeomans doing demos, teaching at local farmers markets or cooking for pop-up dinners. Her recipes reflect the best in seasonality and style. (Last year she introduced me to lobster mushrooms and my life has never been the same!)

Bruce Wolf

Ingredients (Serves 2)

  • 2-3 shallots, peeled & sliced ¼-inch thick
  • Oil for frying
  • 10-12 Brussels sprouts (enough to make 3 cups of leaves)
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup toasted walnut pieces
  • Optional: ¼ cup crumbled blue cheese or cubed soft cheese, such as brie or Camembert

Directions:

  1. Separate the shallot slices into rings and gently press the rings between layers of paper towels or kitchen towels to lightly dry them. Unwrap the shallots and allow them to air dry while heating the oil to 350˚ F. Carefully add the shallot rings to the oil, and fry until golden and crisp. Remove and place on a brown paper bag or paper towels to drain. Sprinkle with salt while they are still hot. Set aside to cool.
  2. Cut the bottom from each sprout, discard any blemished or unsavory outside leaves, and pull the individual leaves off the sprouts. When you get to the tender, pale green center, slice thinly and add to the leaves. You should have 3 cups of fluffy leaves and shredded centers.
  3. Place the leaves in a salad bowl. Add the lemon zest. Season with a generous sprinkle of salt and a good grinding of black pepper. Whisk the lemon juice and olive oil together, and dress the salad with this vinaigrette.
  4. Divide the salad between 2 plates. Scatter crispy fried shallots and toasted walnuts over the leaves. Add the cheese if desired, and enjoy.

Mother’s Brussels Sprouts with Grain Mustard and Ham from Lisa Schroeder
Lisa Schroeder

Lisa Schroeder, chef and owner of Mother’s Bistro, is known for her comfort food. She and her staff nourish the belly and the heart of every diner — because, as Lisa would say, it’s all about the love!

Bruce Wolf

Ingredients (Serves 4-6)

  • 1 pound (2-3 cups) Brussels sprouts
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • ½ cup ham, diced small
  • 6 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon stoneground mustard
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Directions

  1. Barely trim stem end of each sprout and cut a small “x” into each sprout bottom (to help cook the core all the way through).
  2. Fill a medium (4- to 6-quart) pot with water and bring to a boil over high heat. Add salt and Brussels sprouts. Return to a boil, lower heat to a simmer, and cook, uncovered, until they are fork tender, about 6-10 minutes. (Don’t overcook or the sprouts will be mushy and fall apart).
  3. Meanwhile, fill a bowl with cold water and a few cups of ice cubes and set aside.
  4. Once the Brussels sprouts are tender, drain them and place the drained sprouts in the bowl of ice water to stop the cooking.
  5. Remove ice floating in water and strain the sprouts again.
  6. If the sprouts are large, cut them in half lengthwise (so the core is split in two). Set aside.
  7. Heat a medium (10-inch) sauté pan over medium heat. When hot, add butter, followed immediately by the Brussels sprouts.
  8. Sauté over medium-high heat until the Brussels sprouts start to color slightly. Add ham and sauté until lightly caramelized.
  9. Lower heat and add cream and mustards. Stir well with a rubber spatula to combine.
  10. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until most of the cream has evaporated and the sauce has thickened. Taste for salt, season with a few grinds of fresh pepper and serve.  

Yakuza-Style Brussels Sprouts from David Gaspar de Alba
David Gaspar De Alba

David Gaspar de Alba, chef at Yazuka, features “special” Brussels sprouts on the menu when the season dictates. “I prefer to use DeNoble’s Brussels sprouts from Tillamook,” he explains. “The salty ocean air infuses the vegetable with a natural brine flavor that enhances the dish.”

Bruce Wolf

Ingredients (Serves 2)

  • ½ pound Brussels sprouts
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 ounces (almost a cup) chanterelle mushrooms
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons mirin
  • Salt, pepper and red pepper to taste
  • 3 tablespoons ponzu sauce
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds

Directions

  1. Begin by cleaning off any loose leaves on the sprouts and then cut them in half lengthwise. Sprinkle salt and fresh ground pepper on a flat plate. Then place the Brussels sprouts, cut side down, into the salt and pepper mixture.
  2. Heat a sauté pan with olive oil, then slide all the Brussels sprouts off the plate into the pan. Allow the Brussels sprouts to sit for about a minute or two, occasionally flipping one over to check for a light brown caramelization.
  3. Once desired color has been reached, add chanterelle mushrooms and garlic. Sauté the garlic for a few seconds before deglazing the pan with mirin. Be cautious of this step, because the alcohol in the mirin may ignite.
  4. Add salt, pepper and red chili flakes to taste. Place Brussels sprouts on a serving plate and add ponzu sauce, then finish with toasted sesame seeds.

Bistro Marquis’ Baked Brussels Sprouts from Rick Widmeyer
Rick Widmeyer

Rick Widmeyer is the chef at Bistro Marquis, a French-inspired restaurant that uses high-quality fresh and local ingredients from farms, markets and specialty purveyors. The food offers just what you’re craving when looking for a meal that lets the fresh ingredients shine.

Bruce Wolf

Ingredients (Serves 2)

  • ½ pound Brussels sprouts
  • ½ cup chicken stock
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 1 small shallot, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon butter coated in flour, and 1 teaspoon non-coated butter
  • 1 tablespoon grain mustard
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons white wine
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ cup breadcrumbs with 2 teaspoons chopped Italian parsley
  • 2 slices applewood smoked bacon
  • Salt, to taste

Directions

  1. Split the sprouts in half and blanche in boiling water till al dente. Shock in ice water and drain well.
  2. In a large sauté pan, cook bacon until crisp. Add shallots and garlic to the pan and sweat, with the pan covered, until fragrant. Add floured butter.
  3. Deglaze the pan with the wine, reduce and add stock and heavy cream. Stir. Add the mustards, pepper and sprouts and bring to a quick boil.
  4. Remove from heat and place mixture into a shallow baking dish.  Sprinkle with the breadcrumbs and bake at 375 degrees F. for 18-22 minutes, or until bubbly and golden brown.

Nostrana’s Brussels Sprout Leaf Salad with Anchovy Dressing from Cathy Whims
Cathy Whims

Cathy Whims, owner and chef at both Nostrana and Oven & Shaker, pretty much rocks Italian food in this town. Her pizzas are thin-crusted gems and her pastas are divine. Here’s her take on Brussels sprouts.

Bruce Wolf

Ingredients (Serves 4-6)

  • 4 pieces of 1-inch thick slices of country bread, crust removed and torn into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 tablespoons + ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 4 anchovy fillets packed in oil, drained and finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 6 cups Brussels sprout leaves, lightly packed (about 3/4 pound sprouts cored and leaves separated)
  • ½ cup walnuts, lightly toasted
  • 1 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, shaved with a potato peeler or cheese plane
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Heat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Lightly toast walnuts on baking sheet then remove and cool.
  3. Toss bread cubes with 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil.
  4. Place bread cubes on baking sheet and bake until golden brown and crisp, about 10 minutes, tossing every few minutes. Remove and cool.
  5. Place the chopped garlic and anchovies in a bowl with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Slowly whisk in the remaining 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil.
  7. Toss the Brussels sprout leaves in the anchovy dressing.
  8. Garnish with the toasted walnuts and freshly shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano.

Pan-Roasted Brussels Sprouts With Caramelized Apples, Bacon & Whole Grain Mustard from Matthew Howard
Matt Howard

I was blown away when I made this recipe from Screen Door’s co-chef Matthew Howard. The caramelized apple is brilliance, bringing all the flavors together in a remarkably delicious dish. I had to hide them, so I didn’t eat them before company came! It shouldn’t come as a surprise, since Screen Door is a tour de force of Southern food.

Bruce Wolf

Ingredients (Serves 6-8)

  • 2 pounds Brussels sprouts blanched and split
  • 1 large apple, medium dice
  • ¼ cup whole grain mustard
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup diced bacon
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • ¼ cup cold butter

Directions:

  1. Melt sugar over medium heat until it has begun to caramelize. Add diced apple and cook until it has released its juices and has begun to dry again.
  2. Add the mustard, stir to incorporate and remove from heat.
  3. In a separate pan over medium heat, render the bacon. Cook until nicely browned and a fond, or base, has formed on the bottom of the pan.
  4. Add Brussels sprouts and allow them to cook just enough so that the water they release allows for the lifting of the fond on the bottom of the pan and the sprouts have a little color as well. Add garlic and cook through.
  5. Add fresh thyme and caramelized apple mustard mixture and stir. Adjust flavor with salt and pepper.
  6. Remove from heat and stir in cold butter, tossing Brussels sprouts until they are coated and sauce is smooth.

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