Sunday, December 14, 2014

Pan-Seared Brussels Sprouts with Cranberries and Walnuts

THIS IS HOW I LIKE MY SPROUTS!  I'm a big fan of a simple preparation of vegetables that involves some herbs and a little roasting.  Adding cranberries and steaming the Brussels Sprouts in fresh stock and sherry vinegar showcases the delicate nutty flavor without the sulfur smell it might usually possess.  Like any type of cabbage, Brussels sprouts release natural sulfur compounds that can cause an unpleasant smell.  For this reason, it's important to cook the Brussels Sprouts correctly to keep this stench--yeah stench--in check.  If you are lucky enough to grow your own sprouts in the garden, the sulfur smell is not really a concern to you because it's not as potent in the freshly harvested sprouts.  Also, the vegetable loses much of it's bitterness after the first frost, so the longer you "forget" the Brussels sprouts in your garden patch in winter, the better.  Tenderized by the frost, the Sprouts can just be roasted with some herbs and they are good to go.  If you don't have a garden to grow winter vegetables, I recommend cooking them this way.

  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Cooling Oil
  • 1/2 cup dried Cranberries
  • 1/4 cup Walnuts
  • 2 Tbsp. Sherry Vinegar
  • 1 cup homemade Vegetable Stock

  • Wash and clean the Brussels sprouts.  Peal the dark green outer leaves because they can be bitter and tough.
  • Cut the Brussels sprouts in half.
  • Place a oiled pan on medium high heat and carefully place the Brussels sprouts face down into the pan.  Leave them frying until the cut side turns golden brown and caramelized, add 1/2 cup of dried cranberries and 1/4 cup of walnuts.
  • Immediately afterwards, de-glaze the pan with 2 tablespoons of sherry vinegar and then add 1 cup of vegetable stock. 
  • Cover the pan and let the Brussels sprouts cook for 5 minutes.  This steams the sprouts and allows them to get tender.
  • Uncover the pan and allow the vegetable stock to reduce.  This will take about 3-4 minutes or until the remaining liquid has a syrupy consistency.
       Nina & Spencer

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