I know. I know. Some of you out there are thinking, “How can brussel sprouts be tasty?” If you like brussel spourts, read on. If you don’t, read on anyway. Believe it or not, I’ve made these brussel sprouts for several people who said they didn’t like them, and they came away big fans. The secret is twofold: 1) butter (fat = flavor) and 2) cooking them until they are soft ALL the way through. In ohter words, until the butter invades every little nook and cranny in the sprout.
- 1 large handful of brussel sprouts for each person (i.e. 4 people = 4 large handfuls of sprouts)
- 3 tablespoons of butter
- Beef or vegetable broth (enough to cover the bottom of a large skillet)
- kosher salt
- Cut the brussel sprouts in half lengthwise.
- In a skillet large enough to accommodate your amount of sprouts in a single layer, melt the butter over medium high heat.
- When the butter is hot, add the sprouts and generously add kosher salt. Let the sprouts start to sizzle in the butter for 2-3 minutes.
- Flip the sprouts around (so as to not let them burn on one side), and add the broth–just enough liquid to coat the bottom of the pan. The purpose is to allow the sprouts some liquid in which to steam as well as fry (i.e. braise).
- Let the sprouts braise until soft throughout when poked with a fork (about 6-8 minutes more). Occasionally, move them around the pan and turn them to keep them from burning).
How Not to Screw It Up
- Don’t use a butter substitute. Butter brings a lot of flavor. Do not cut corners and use margarine or another substitute. If you worry about cholesterol, this dish is not for you. If you worry about your health, butter in moderation is better for you than chemical substitute anyway.
- Be generous with the salt. It helps to draw moisture out of the sprouts while they cook. That helps them to steam as well as fry.
- I prefer beef broth for this dish as it adds some nice flavor. However, if you are trying to keep this dish vegetarian (or you are already having a heart attack about cholesterol from the butter–pun fully intended–you can use vegetable or mushroom broth).
- Keep moving those sprouts around the pan every 2 minutes or so. Cooking them on medium high or even high heat helps with the flavor, but if you let them sit in the pan, they will burn. The liquid in the pan will most definitely evaporate before the sprouts are fully cooked.