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A bag of BS!

purple goddess Aug 6, 2008 11:08 PM

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?

  1. s
    smalt Aug 17, 2008 05:54 PM

    Still hate them, Purple Goddess?

    1. c
      chrisinroch Aug 17, 2008 04:28 PM

      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
        walker Aug 17, 2008 05:09 PM

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

      2. j
        jencounter Aug 12, 2008 09:42 AM

        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
          Passadumkeg Aug 12, 2008 10:52 AM

          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
            The Old Gal Aug 17, 2008 08:15 AM

            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
              Sherri Aug 17, 2008 01:21 PM

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

          2. Passadumkeg Aug 12, 2008 03:24 AM

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

            3 Replies
            1. re: Passadumkeg
              lcool Aug 12, 2008 06:49 AM

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

              1. re: lcool
                Passadumkeg Aug 12, 2008 07:36 AM

                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
                  lcool Aug 12, 2008 08:06 AM

                  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. a
              AGM_Cape_Cod Aug 11, 2008 07:30 PM

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

              1. souschef Aug 11, 2008 12:51 PM

                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. l
                  LaurCar Aug 11, 2008 12:35 PM

                  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. PattiCakes Aug 11, 2008 09:33 AM

                    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. c
                      ceebee1 Aug 11, 2008 09:11 AM

                      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. t
                        The Old Gal Aug 11, 2008 07:48 AM

                        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. purple goddess Aug 10, 2008 09:29 PM

                          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: purple goddess
                            alkapal Aug 11, 2008 06:29 AM

                            what is "bmetb" option, please?

                            1. re: alkapal
                              Caitlin McGrath Aug 11, 2008 03:34 PM

                              I assume it's Bacon Makes Everything T___ Better.

                              1. re: alkapal
                                smalt Aug 11, 2008 05:27 PM


                                Bacon Makes Every Thing Betta! :-)

                                1. re: smalt
                                  alkapal Aug 12, 2008 06:33 AM


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

                            2. Karl S Aug 9, 2008 03:16 PM

                              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. Will Owen Aug 9, 2008 02:06 PM

                                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
                                  trishyb Aug 9, 2008 02:41 PM

                                  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
                                    Caroline1 Aug 9, 2008 07:54 PM

                                    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
                                    alkapal Aug 10, 2008 04:29 AM

                                    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
                                      Caroline1 Aug 10, 2008 05:06 AM

                                      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
                                        Passadumkeg Aug 10, 2008 05:42 AM

                                        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
                                          Caroline1 Aug 10, 2008 06:40 AM

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

                                          1. re: Passadumkeg
                                            alkapal Aug 10, 2008 01:30 PM

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

                                    2. Caroline1 Aug 8, 2008 09:40 PM

                                      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. Passadumkeg Aug 8, 2008 07:47 PM

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

                                        1. sarah galvin Aug 8, 2008 11:04 AM

                                          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. s
                                            smalt Aug 8, 2008 08:39 AM

                                            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
                                              alkapal Aug 8, 2008 05:56 PM

                                              "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
                                                smalt Aug 8, 2008 06:38 PM

                                                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. g
                                              garfish Aug 7, 2008 05:40 PM

                                              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. a
                                                ajcraig Aug 7, 2008 03:29 PM


                                                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
                                                  weezycom Aug 7, 2008 04:12 PM

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

                                                2. s
                                                  Sherri Aug 7, 2008 02:09 PM

                                                  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. weinstein5 Aug 7, 2008 12:29 PM

                                                    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
                                                      walker Aug 7, 2008 08:45 PM

                                                      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. JenBoes Aug 7, 2008 11:15 AM

                                                      This Ina Garten recipe is awesome!


                                                      1. b
                                                        bastet212 Aug 7, 2008 10:30 AM

                                                        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
                                                          susan1353 Aug 7, 2008 10:55 AM

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


                                                        2. alkapal Aug 7, 2008 06:25 AM

                                                          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. Marge Aug 7, 2008 06:00 AM

                                                            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. l
                                                              lcool Aug 7, 2008 05:48 AM

                                                              ? 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. LNG212 Aug 7, 2008 05:45 AM

                                                                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
                                                                  beetlebug Aug 7, 2008 06:15 AM

                                                                  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. Rubee Aug 6, 2008 11:46 PM

                                                                  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. b
                                                                    bw2082 Aug 6, 2008 11:21 PM

                                                                    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
                                                                      Sharuf Aug 7, 2008 04:55 AM

                                                                      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.

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