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Monday, November 19, 2012

brussels sprouts with brown butter and parmigiano reggiano

the key to making delicious brussels sprouts is simple -- cut them in half so they cook quickly, parboil them for ~3-4 minutes until just almost tender, cool quickly in ice water to stop the cooking, then re-warm them in butter to serve. to make them sublime, brown the butter (the French call it "beurre noisette" -- which means "hazlenut butter," referring both to the color and the flavor).


  • 1 pound brussels sprouts, rinsed, outer damaged leaves removed, core end trimmed and cut in half vertically
  • large pot of boiling water w/a pinch of salt
  • large bowl of ice water
  • 1/4-1/2 stick of butter (depending upon how much butter you like -- I use the larger amount, but I like butter a LOT), cooked over medium heat in a large saute pan until deep brown but *not* burned -- remove it from heat as soon as it's done and set aside
  • 1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt, to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 ounces parmigiano reggiano, finely grated
drop the trimmed brussels sprouts into the boiling water (use lots of boiling water, set over high heat, so that it comes back to a boil quickly), and cook for 3-4 minutes -- until the brussels sprouts are tender, but a teeny bit less done than you want -- they will finish cooking in the butter. as soon as they're done boiling, drain them and immediately plunge them into the ice water to set the color and stop the cooking -- they should be bright emerald green and beautiful. while you're cooking the brussels sprouts, brown the butter as instructed, then removed from the heat. drain the sprouts when they're cool, and place them in the butter in the saute pan. return the pan to medium heat, and toss the sprouts in the hot butter until warmed through. season with salt and pepper, give a final toss and turn out into a serving dish. top with the finely grated parmigiano and serve.

brown butter and parmigiano perform some sort of magical alchemy on almost any green vegetable, turning them into ambrosia. trust me on this.

2 comments:

reader said...

This is the best way to cook them so yummy.

Diane McGee Hardin said...

I agree! when I cook them like this, they become my favorite part of the meal. even better than the stuffing!