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A bag of BS!

Those of you who know me from other boards will be familiar with my nemesis...

The Brussel(s) Sprout.

I have previously described this vegetable as "The Spawn Of Satan"... and that was when I was feeling charitable. A darling friend , keeps offering to cook them for me, in a way that she assures me, will convert me... Something to do with bacon and chestnuts

I am skeptical.

So, to my dilemma...

I work with the lovely M... who just this minute has presented my with a HUGE bag of BS.

They're in season at the mo. They were grown organically in a friend of hers' garden.

So now what?

I can barely look at the bag, as it brings back memories of Mater Beige and sprouts roil boiled for 30 mins in water with a little bicarb added (To keep the colour)

Even Fritz, my trusty childhood dachshund, wouldn't eat them if I dropped them, surreptitiously on the floor!

Dinner tonight was going to be lime glazed chicken wings, with jasmine rice.

Any suggestions for what do do with a bag of BS?

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  1. I split them in half and steam for a couple of minutes. Then I heat some olive oil in a pan and saute them till they're golden brown on the cut side and a little crispy. S and p and some lemon juice on top. Also if I'm in the mood, I'll sprinkle some pomegranate seeds on top or drizzle with a little bit of pomegranate molasses.

    1 Reply
    1. re: bw2082

      I have a recipe for sweet and sour (German style) Brussels sprouts which is very good but rather complicated. Yours looks like it would do the job with admirable simplicity.

    2. This is something totally different, but delicious. Even though I didn't think mine were as good as what I had at the restaurant, they were pretty close. The brussel sprouts are roasted and tossed with a chili/mint/cilantro/fish sauce dressing. The recipe link to Epicurious.com is at the bottom of the thread.

      Help me recreate dish from momofuku saam

      1. I just keep it simple. I cut them in half, toss with olive oil and a bit of salt, and roast them until there are some brown/carmelized spots and they are softened. Then I toss them with lemon juice, a little more olive oil (if needed), and shave some pecorino toscano on top.

        I think bw2082's idea of steaming them first and then proceeding is something I should try too.

        1 Reply
        1. re: LNG212

          I love roasted brussel sprouts as well. Another way to jazz them up, is the mince up a bit of pancetta or bacon and toss with olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper. Roast for about 20 minutes, stirring halfway through.

          I love how some of the leaves get all crunchy but the body stays soft. BTW, if the heads are big, cut them in half.

        2. ? Do you eat cabbage or slaw,other members of the cole family? My twin sons for years ate all except BS.Solution #1,we shredded them in a food processor.Most of the time they were consolidated into a stir fry.

          Recently we had a slaw served by a friend using 60% maybe more BS (shredded).
          A list of the basics she used,dressed/seasoned to taste.

          BS shredded fine 50-60%
          zucchini shredded fine 30-40%
          sweet onion (3 combined) = 15-20%
          pickled ginger (sushi)
          apple (gala)

          dressing was a well balanced mix of measures will be approximate

          miso 1/2 cup
          soy sauce (dark) 2 tsp
          lime juice 1 tsb
          rice vinegar 1 tsb
          chili oil ?

          salt and black pepper was added last,so all the cut veggies would not sweat to
          cucumbers would work as would cabbage
          this was thrown together because of garden excess,we told nary a person about
          the BS,100% camouflaged

          this and Rubee's offering seem menu compatible,maybe will work

          1. As a born again brussels sprouts lover, what converted me was well done roasted sprouts--I cut them in half and roast with garlic cloves and olive oil till brown and crispy, then sprinkle with a little fleur de sel. What used to be one of the few foods I despised, is now a favorite treat!

            1. in honor of the bacon fat thread, split in half and saute in bacon fat in a heavy skillet. toss the crunchy bacon bits on top. salt, pepper. there ya go!

              "everything goes batter with bacon." even bs!

              1. This recipe is FANtastic. Ive made it twice- once for thanksgiving and once for xmas. Its nutty, salty, and sweet all a the same time...


                1 Reply
                1. re: bastet212

                  Here's another idea: Brussels Sprouts and Pearl Onions in a Horseradish Cream Sauce.


                  1. Do it simply - split so all are about the same size - toss with some olive oil and kosher salt and roast them in 400 deg oven and you will be converted - I used to hate them as well until I prepared them this way -

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: weinstein5

                      I think from this board I learned to do something similar -- only difference is that instead of splitting them I slice them in thin slices -- it's not that time consuming. Do as stated above and roast for about 15 minutes. They don't develop that "smell" you get when water is involved.

                    2. Roasting in a hot oven is my first favorite method but you already have several excellents recipes for that prep. Another fav is to slice them *very* thinly, thinly shredded, and saute w/ prosciutto shards. Add garlic or not, dep[ending on your audience. Neither of these bears any resemblance to that dreaded bowl o'green smelly slime that passed for BS at holiday tables of yore.

                      1. REGIFT!

                        I'm with you, can't stand them. Secretly I want to plant them and see if I get a full grown cabbage like nature intended.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: ajcraig

                          Don't like them, either, but want to grow them so I can use the fabulous looking stems of BSseses in flower arrangements.

                        2. Here's a couple.

                          1. Cut in half and simmer in salted water until just tender. Drain. Add a few teaspoons of butter a good squirt of lemon juice and plenty of lemon zest and pepper. Adjust salt.

                          2. Au Gratin: Cut in have and simmer like above. Cool in ice water. Arange shallow in a gratin dish. Add salt and pepper and a splash of heavy cream about 1/8" deep over the bottom of the dish. Top with bread crumbs and parm and bake at 400 about 45 min. until the crumb is GB&D.

                          Hope it works.

                          1. Because they're sometimes bitter, I split in half, cook in some soup stock and drain, then finish them off by cooking up some bacon until crispy and saute/reheat in some of the bacon fat and top with the bacon. BMTB! (Bacon Makes Things Betta!)

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: smalt

                              "in honor of the bacon fat thread, split in half and saute in bacon fat in a heavy skillet. toss the crunchy bacon bits on top. salt, pepper. there ya go!

                              "everything goes batter with bacon." even bs!"
                              smalt, great minds think alike! ;-D

                              1. re: alkapal

                                alkapal, i did notice your entry and thought about just raising my glass silently to you, but then again, thought i'd add in the bit about cooking in soup stock to ease the occasional bitterness.....


                            2. I use the Silver Palate recipe - separate the leaves, saute with EVOO & butter, and thyme. Garnish with chopped parsley and pistachios. When I am too lazy to separate the leaves, I finely chop them.

                              1. Marinate them in Stoly vodka. Eat them pickled (pun intended), by the bottom of the bottle, you should be champion BSer!

                                1. Well, ya know, if you've tried something more than once and it still makes your taste buds want to go on a Caribbean cruise without you, there's nothing wrong with a social lie. Feed the damned things to the garbage disposal and tell your friend how great they were. But not so much that she gives you more twice a week! Do NOT give them to someone else. Your friend would ony find out about it and there would be wounds to lick! Garbage disposals keep secrets.

                                  1. Stick with that bacon thing. Easy way: chop a couple of slices of bacon into crosswise strips. Get a Tbs or two of olive oil good and hot in a big nonstick or braising pot and throw in the bacon. Stir until it's all frizzled but not burnt, then stir in your well-soaked, drained but still dripping-wet sprouts, cut in half or not. Salt and pepper, stir vigorously to get everything distributed, then splash in a little white wine (I usually have a glass in my hand here anyway - chicken broth or vermouth are both good too) and put the lid on. Reduce the flame to low and go burn a steak or something; they'll be done in twenty minutes. Well, *I* say they're done earlier, but Mrs. O will not tolerate a crunchy sprout.

                                    By the way, this also is a great method for cooking quartered cabbage, broccoli, or green beans. Especially if you're bacon freaks.

                                    7 Replies
                                    1. re: Will Owen

                                      i love brussels sprouts and will eat them simply steamed or boiled. but i have had success in serving them to non-bs eaters by:
                                      -boiling just until tender in salted water (cut big heads in half)
                                      -drain and place in saute pan with melted butter over medium heat
                                      -sprinkle top of sprouts with turbinado sugar (or light brown sugar) and toss until sugar melts and begins to slightly caramelize
                                      -salt and pepper to taste

                                      for some reason, the slight sweetness of the sugar seems to lessen the bitterness that non-bs eaters taste and dislike.

                                      1. re: trishyb

                                        I love tiny tiny brussels sprouts steamed with a touch of butter and a nice sprinkling of lavender de Province over them. The lavender and the brussels sprouts have a steamy love affair while they're cooking! Really quite lovely. Now, if I could just figure something out to make the brussels sprouts not LOOK like brussels sprouts, I suspect even my son would enjoy them! '-)

                                      2. re: Will Owen

                                        will owen, here here for the baconarian club!

                                        your method is perfect -- for all sorts of things, as you mention. i always enjoy your posts.

                                        ps, did you see the info re bacon salt? http://store.baconsalt.com/

                                        1. re: alkapal

                                          My evil sense for the appreciation of contradictions is forcing me to do this (aka "the devil made me do it), but I'm grinning ear to ear over the probability of this coming out at the very top of the "America's Most Heart Healthy Foods" list...! '-)

                                          1. re: Caroline1

                                            We are having such a cold rainy summer all I'm going to get are green tomatoes. My Brussel sprout crop (and cabbages) are flourishing! I love the name for them in Norwegian "rosen koll" or rose cabbages. Out in the garden I'll often pick the teenie weenies and pop them in my mouth raw. Maybe purple godess needs to grow some Brussel sprouts so she can bond with them and develop a more positive relationship, a litttle sprout therapy.

                                            1. re: Passadumkeg

                                              Sprout therapy could be good. Just beware of that Jolly Green Giant!

                                              1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                i'm envious of your green tomatoes! bacon fat, plus crusty with fine corn meal/flour green toms! yeah!!

                                        2. If you have children or house guest who need to be kept occupied, you could invite them to remove the leaves one by one and then pan roast them in a wok and season as you would with other greens.

                                          They are also known by my Scottish friend as Belgian bastards...

                                          1. I couldn't bring myself to even look at them over the weekend.. so.. tonight's the night!

                                            I'm going the BMETB option!

                                            4 Replies
                                              1. re: alkapal

                                                I assume it's Bacon Makes Everything T___ Better.

                                                1. re: alkapal


                                                  Bacon Makes Every Thing Betta! :-)

                                                  1. re: smalt


                                                    well, purple goddess, you got it spot on! how did you like it?

                                              2. The problem with BS is that they are almost always overcooked. When you take a leafy vegetable that has grown in a thick dense package and try to cook it all the way through as you would a carrot, or potato, you get a pretty awful result. So, cut them in quarters. From there I would suggest what we used to call "butter steaming", Heat the lipid, either butter, butter/oil or flavored oil.. your choice. Pop in the BS, stir fry until coated with the lipid. Season. Add a little (just enough to cover the bottom of the pan should be enough) liquid, water, broth, wine, whatever, cover and cook about 4 min. Adjust the cooking times to your taste, but Do Not Overcook! There should be just the slightest resistance when you bit down.
                                                Why we still try to cook brussel sprouts whole is beyoud me. After all the books we read where they smelled up the apartment stair wells it seems to me we should have changed our ways my now.

                                                1. Known in my house as "little, gross cabbages"!

                                                  I don't have the recipe on hand but thinly slice and sauté them in a bit of olive oil. Once they're just crispy, throw in a splash of white wine and sliced almonds.

                                                  I served these once to my Scottish father who wouldn't eat them because they weren't soft and mushy. He likes his veg boiled for half an hour and then salted (because they have no flavour). Sigh.

                                                  1. My mother, GRHS, used to steam them in the micro, cool them down, put them in a big jar, then cover them with Italian salad dressing & stash them in her fridge. She'd cut them up & put them on salads (like artichokes), or stick a toothpick in them as an hors d'ouvre. By way of explanation, she also liked chicken gizzards.

                                                    My brother-in-law does a variation on the bacon thing, using onion, garlic & lots of bacon. Somehow, his sprouts fall apart into individual leaves so that can't even tell what they were originally. My husband, who HATES BS, actually requests this dish at Thanksgiving. We always have a lot to drink first, though.

                                                    No one has even mentioned the day after the BS feast.........

                                                    1. You can mail the BS to me! I have an unnatural love for BS.

                                                      My favorite way to prepair them is roasted @ 400 degrees for 25 minutes with salt, evoo and minced garlic. (Garlic added during the last 10 minutes of roasting)

                                                      or shredded the BS and pan fry, adding whatever flavors you like. Also BMETB certainly applys here.

                                                      1. I like BS, but it amazes me that anyone would go through these gyrations just to be polite. Why not just politely state that you do not like BS, and return the "gift".

                                                        Alternately, toss the bag of BS, and state that they were delicious.

                                                        1. I gifted my neighbor with a summer squash and she regifted it to me as a squash casserole. That is a thought.

                                                          1. I still think marinating them in Stoly is an enjoyable means to a BS end.

                                                            3 Replies
                                                            1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                              What an awful demise for quality hooch,that could have done it's bit for Gravlaks.

                                                              1. re: lcool

                                                                Ok, Ok, use Old Mr. Boston, the point is to develop a good buzz and develop a positive association w/ BS, a la Pavlov.
                                                                Waaaiit a minute, I love BS cooked or raw and this is coming from a guy who used to hate 'um, and I love Stoly (pure Russian heritage here) and raw BS steeped in Stoly is quite good, don't knock it 'til...
                                                                With grav lox or Scandavanian cray fish, gimme Finlandia or Absolut (since Finnish Korskinkorva is not available.) Linje Adkovit would do too.
                                                                Wait a minute again, BS marinated in a good anise flavored adkovit. Yes!

                                                                1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                  I do mine 50/50 Pernod & Ciroc or homestill potato with star anise.
                                                                  Always got a wee bitter note with grain Vodkas,brand maybe?My
                                                                  Danish cousins use a good Genever.BS is fine without a supporting
                                                                  act here also.

                                                            2. I cut them into halves or quarters (depending upon the size), and blanch or steam until barely tender.

                                                              In another pan I cook up a bunch of pancetta. Toss in the blanched/drained sprouts and cook until they start to brown. Splash of acid (red wine vinegar, ACV or lemon), salt and pepper and holy wow, jesus on a plate.

                                                              3 Replies
                                                              1. re: jencounter

                                                                JMJ, jencounter, that does sound good, now when my BS is ready to pick in Oct.-Nov., I hope I remember it.

                                                                1. re: jencounter

                                                                  Just planted my BS and have your recipe waiting as the first to try. Sounds great! That one might make the Thanksgiving table this year.

                                                                  1. re: The Old Gal

                                                                    Also, plant a couple of extra plants -- the BS stalks are always the hit of the Thanksgiving table decorations.

                                                                2. Here is a cant miss recipe......1) remove sprouts from bag 2) gently throw sprouts into garden compost bin. 3) eat something that you like. 4) take an "assertiveness training" course at your local community education spot.

                                                                  Seriously, if you are over 18, you get to choose which vegetables you eat. Its a rule

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: chrisinroch

                                                                    I agree; I feel I like enough stuff, I don't have to like EVERYTHING!

                                                                  2. Still hate them, Purple Goddess?