SHREDDED BRUSSELS SPROUTS WITH KIMCHI
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup napa cabbage kimchi, roughly chopped
1 pound brussels sprouts, trimmed and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch shreds
Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the kimchi and cook until beginning to soften, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the brussels sprouts and cook until they turn bright green, about 2 minutes. Add 2 tablespoons water, cover, and cook until the brussels sprouts are al dente, 2 to 4 minutes, adding more water if necessary. Season with salt to taste.
Yield: 2 to 4 servings as side dish.
CREAM-BRAISED BRUSSELS SPROUTS
Adapted from All About Braising
First things first: buy good sprouts. They should feel firm and have tight, shiny-edged leaves. I like to buy medium-size ones, with heads that measure, say, 1 to 1-1/4 inches in diameter. You could buy littler ones, if you like, but don’t buy them any bigger. I find that the larger they are, the stronger–i.e. more bitter–their flavor. My dad used to come home from the grocery store with big, hoary, loose-leafed, air-headed sprouts, and it made me crazy. Do not do that.
These sprouts would be delicious alongside most any meat that typically graces the holiday table: beef, turkey, ham, lamb, you name it. And with a crusty hunk of bread and some cold leftover chicken, they also make for a warming Sunday lunch. We gave it a trial run just for you, and I actually had to remove the serving dish from the table to keep us from eating the whole thing.
1-1/4 pounds Brussels sprouts
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 teaspoons coarse sea salt, plus more to taste
1 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, or more to taste
First, prep the Brussels sprouts. Trim the stem end of each sprout and pull off any ragged or nasty outer leaves. Cut the sprouts in half from stem end to tip, and then cut each half in half again. Ultimately, you want little wedges.
In a large (12-inch) skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the Brussels sprouts and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the sprouts are nicely browned in spots, about 5 minutes or so. I like mine to get some good color here, so that they have a sweetly caramelized flavor.
Pour in the cream, stir to mix, and then cover the pot. Reduce the heat to low or medium low: you want to keep the pan at a slow simmer. Braise until the sprouts are tender enough to be pierced easily with the tip of a paring knife, about 30-35 minutes. The cream will have reduced some and will have taken on a creamy tan color.
Remove the lid, and stir in the lemon juice. Taste for seasoning, and adjust as necessary. Let the pan simmer, uncovered, for a minute or two to thicken the cream to a glaze that loosely coats the sprouts. Serve immediately.
Yield: 4 to 6 servings, depending on what else is on the plate.
HASHED BRUSSELS SPROUTS WITH POPPY SEEDS AND LEMON
Inspired by The Union Square Cafe Cookbook
About 1-1/4 pounds Brussels sprouts
1-1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium garlic clove, minced
1 tablespoon poppy seeds
1/4 cup white wine
1/4 tsp salt
Cut the stems from the Brussels sprouts and remove any blemished leaves. When all the sprouts are trimmed, you should be left with about 1 pound total. Halve each sprout lengthwise, and slice each half into thin slices, about 1/8 inch thick; or, alternatively, hash them in a food processor fitted with the slicing disc attachment.
In a large bowl, toss the hashed Brussels sprouts with the lemon juice.
In a large skillet or saute pan, warm the olive oil over high heat, almost to the smoking point. Stir in the hashed sprouts, garlic, and poppy seeds. Add the wine, and cook for about 3-4 minutes, stirring constantly, until the sprouts are bright green and lightly softened but still barely crunchy. Reduce the heat to low, season with salt, and cook for 1 minute more. Remove the pan from the heat, and serve.
Yield: About 4-6 servings.