Saturday, December 26, 2009

The Four Stages Of Sprouts

Brussels sprouts. Chou de Bruxelles in French. In England, they are apparently a traditional Christmas dish. Infamous, actually. But I like sprouts, so Ken and I decided that we should have some along side our Christmas goose this year.

Stage 1: Fresh from the store, just before trimming.

It had been a while since we last had sprouts. Probably since last winter. Ken was busy making stuffing and cooking the goose all morning long so I took charge of the sprouts. First I trimmed them up, meaning that I cut the stems and took the outer leaves off.

Stage 2: Steamed/simmered in goose broth until just tender.

Then I rinsed them and put them into a pot with some of the poaching liquid from the goose. A very flavorful broth, that was, and the sprouts were steamed/simmered in it until they were just about done.

Stage 3: Sautéed in goose fat, then sprinkled with a little flour.

Just before serving, I sautéed the sprouts in a bit of goose fat and sprinkled them with flour so they'd take on some color. Then, voilà, a bowl full of green goodness. And they were so tasty with the Christmas goose.

Stage 4: Ready to serve!

I realized that I missed having sprouts, so we'll likely get some more before too long. Do you like Brussels sprouts? If so, how do you eat them?


  1. The sprouts look wonderful. I didn't grow up eating sprouts, and my early adult memories are of overcooked, smelly sprouts. This year I discovered a recipe that combines diced carrot sauteed with lardon [parsnips can be added too]. Then sliced sprouts are added with a small amount of stock and then finished with cream. Even the non-sprout lover in the household will eat these.

  2. Walt, I know sprouts are very nutrious but I just can't stand the sight or the smell of them.

    The only way I can force myself to eat them is als follows: I put the steamed sprouts in a buttered shallow dish together with a generous portion of strips of 'jambon blanc'. I cover with a mixture of beaten eggs, grated cheese, cream, pepper and salt. I then put the dish in a hot oven until the eggs set in an omelette style way. It's also a great way of using up leftovers!

    My friend C. on the contrary - who in general is not a vegetable eater - just loves sprouts and would eat them winter and summer!

  3. We roast them with garlic and olive oil and eat them with a crunchy bread.
    The only thing is they tend to fall apart sometimes that way. Still delicious however!

  4. We love sprouts, all my family do, even the little children. We eat them as simple as possible, and they have to be cooked properly, not too soft and not too hard...

    I would not buy them throughout the year, some people are saying they are available..kept has a winter veg!

  5. I remember Dedene posting once about roasting them in a shallow pan after coating them lightly with olive oil, and she said they were delicious that way. I haven't tried that yet, but I've enjoyed them sauteed with a little flour and butter, as you've described before :) I bet they were yummy with the goose!


  6. i roast them in oven on high after tossing with olive oil & kosher salt.....they get a bit caramilized & r sweet.....if overcooked & mushy, the nasty smell comes out....i never liked them growing up, but they r good this way....not as tasty the second day so i just do a few

  7. I'm a huge fan of fact, they are close to the top of my yummy list. We did ours yesterday:
    1. Roasted in the oven on a baking sheet
    2. Drenched in a mixture of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, red pepper flakes, garlic, salt and lots of black pepper.
    3. Tossed in a little red pepper and onion for color.
    4. Crunchy walnuts before serving.


  8. We're roasters here. We used to steam them, but once we tried roasting with olive oil and garlic, that was the end of steaming for us. I love the way the outsides get a little crunchy.

    We're very lucky to live 10 miles from what must be brussels sprouts central in Half Moon Bay. I was able to buy some still on the stalk a couple of days ago--at Trader Joe's!

  9. I roast them in butter with sea salt and whole pecans covered, for about 20 minutes, then uncovered to brown a bit. Yummy!

  10. I knew I would get a mixed bag of reactions to sprouts. They're just one of those vegetables that people have strong feelings about.

    Thanks for your comments and ideas. They all sound very good - I may just try them!

  11. When I was a kid, I couldn't be in the house when my mom cooked those. She never forced me to eat them thankfully. Then about 30 years later, I ate some, loved them and now have them at least once a month. I just steam them and eat them with a little melted butter for dipping.

  12. Hated them as a kid but like them now. I bet they'd also be good with your Christmas eve cheese fondue.

  13. I usually just roast them in the oven with olive oil and salt. But I did try a good recipe that involved sauteing them in butter and then adding some cider vinegar.

  14. I LOVEEEEEEEEEE brussel sprouts.. I eat them like you do!!! YUMMMM!! When's lunch being served?!


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