Friday, January 4, 2013


More Like Roman Cabbage

Everyone knows that tomatoes are really fruits, but you might be horrified — or a less severe, more appropriate adjective — to learn that most of the rest of your favorite "vegetables" are too, except Brussels sprouts. And beets. Okay, and broccoli and asparagus are safe (from what?) too. But back to the sprouts (which are actually Italian and not sprouts — when will the lies end?): if they're not in your top 10, try this recipe and then try the other 100 involving pork that people will give you the second you let on you might be interested in Brussels sprouts:

Preheat oven to 400.

1 lb-ish Brussels sprouts, stemmed & halved with damaged outer leaves removed
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup dried cranberries
2 tbsp slivered almonds
1 tbsp chunky salt & 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Toss. Roast in a baking dish or cookie sheet for 15-20 minutes until the sprouts are tender and the loose outer leaves have turned brown and crispy. Live forever!

63 Comments / Post A Comment


Crispy garlic fried Brussels sprouts are some of the very best foods I have ever eaten. There's a brunch place in DC that serves those with pistachios, apricot and yogurt, and holy lord is it good.


@Emby That description is making me thisclose to drooling all over my desk. I love Brussels sprouts cooked nearly any way, but ohmygod crispy ones? Yuuuum.


@olivebee The trick, as far as I can figure, is to cut them in half and pan fry them flat-side down in oil (olive?) until they're crispy.


@Emby Or, I dunno, I guess I could read the recipe in the article and notice that it's similar, but with roasting instead of pan frying. Maybe roasting is the way to go. Maybe both work.

I bet both work.

Tuna Surprise

I get mine crispy using the following method:

Buy bacon. Cut into little pieces. Put in cast iron skillet and cook halfway-ish (until fat is rendered) and take out of skillet.

Cut Brussels sprouts in half. Throw into cast iron pan with bacon drippings and put into a hot oven (200 C which is ?? F (prob 350/400)).

Leave in oven for about 30 min. Throw bacon back into pan and slide back into oven for another 10 or so until bacon and sprouts achieve desired level of done-ness. Salt/pepper to taste. I usually only do pepper because bacon is salty enough.

vicky austin

@Emby Sounds amaaazing - what brunch place?!


@Emby Yeah, my husband and I usually roast them, which is good, but I bet pan frying makes them way crispier. Or grilling. I wish I had a grill so I could make them have that lovely blackened texture. I think the best ones I have ever eaten were made in a campfire. My husband covered them in olive oil and herbs/garlic, wrapped them in foil, and stuck the pouches in the fire for like an hour. They were incredible.


@vicky austin Ardeo/Bardeo in Cleveland Park!


@Tuna Surprise Thank you!

But now since you have brought it up, I have a question for you. A cast iron skillet question.

Why the fuck can't I get mine to be non-stick? Stuff sticks to it LIKE CRAZY. I've tried every method I can find on youtube on how to season it—generally, spreading shortening/oil all over it and letting it sit in a 350° oven for an hour—and it just refuses to get that glossy look they all say it should get. Tips? What am I doing wrong? (No, I'm not washing it with soap.)

RK Fire

@Emby What are you cooking in it now? I swear for the first three months I had my iron skillet, I only cooked pork and other fatty meats to increase the level of non-stickiness.


@RK Fire Mostly meats. But sometimes those meats are marinated and have sauce on them. And once I scrambled some eggs and those got super-stuck to the skillet.

I think both of these may have been mistakes.

RK Fire

@Emby Hmm, okay, I think this a question beyond my scant cast iron skillet knowledge then. I've had problems with both of those things as well but I now manage to avoid them by not scrambling eggs in them and resigning to spending a little extra time cleaning the skillet after cooking marinated, saucy meat. Although I've gotten better about letting the meat just sit there while searing (so it doesn't attach itself permanently to the pan), some of the seasoning still sticks.


@Emby what kind of oil are you using? That might be the trick--make sure it's an oil with a high smoking point, like canola/vegetable. You'll have to season it a couple times after the first usage. I would basically let mine cool, recoat it, and then put it back in the oven for another hour. I don't use anything more than water and coarse salt to clean my cast iron and it seems to keep the seasoning pretty well.

If you fuck it up--barkeeper's friend that biz to get all the gook off and start from scratch. You can do as many times as needed http://food52.com/hotline/7481-what-s-the-best-way-to-season-a-new-cast-iron-skillet

And, of course, our own clean person's take: http://thehairpin.com/2011/08/ask-a-clean-person-butt-marker-cast-iron-and-hood-grease


@RK Fire eggs are kinda a beast on cast iron because they get into the pores of the pan--I generally try not to do them in there, non-stick was made for eggs.


@parallel-lines Thanks for the tips!!! I tried starting from scratch, too, but wasn't able to quite get all the goo off. But I did not use barkeeper's friend. Good to know!


@Emby I have a lot of feelings about cast iron!

a) You really need to start the seasoning at a higher temp - Jolie's method is similar to the Homesick Texan's, which is the one I used. And the cheapest vegetable oil I could find.

b) My dad swears by copper scouring pads and super hot water to clean - the copper is a softer metal than the iron, so it won't fuck up the pan but it will scrub off the crusties. This hasn't damaged the seasoning. I would be wary of using Barkeeper's Friend just because I'd be scared of not getting it all off and accidentally eating some, but that's me.

c) Make sure you're cooking with enough oil! Especially with eggs!

Lily Rowan

@Emby My cast-iron pan is pretty close, finally, after years of mostly cooking bacon in it. But seriously, a lot of bacon.


@Emby 350 is definitely not hot enough. If your oven has a self-clean cycle, those are usually super high heat. Flax seed oil is worth the extra money, because it has a really high smoke point and can be used to season pans at a high temp. Rub flaxseed oil in, stick the pan in for an entire self-clean cycle, maybe repeat.


@schrodingers_cat People used to season their cast irons by putting them directly into the fire, so 350 is definitely not gonna cut it! Turn it up as high as you can go, it's virtually impossible to break those things.

Sidenote: it is really fun to season a cast iron pan in a fire. You feel like a super bad ass cowboy, like you stumbled out of a Cormac McCarthy book.


@Emby Hello, Red Line, I'm coming for you. Please wait for me.


@Tuna Surprise I went lazy this week, and I'm never going back. Instead of halving them, I put them through the slicing disk on my food processor. Ended up with brussels sprout confetti. They roasted faster and had a much higher crispy bit ratio. 20 mins at 400 with olive oil and salt.


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Hehe... that's a good one! @m


A lot of the fruits in that slideshow will now be used in my arsenal when my mom tells me to "cut down on the fruits...all that sugar will turn to fat."

Tell it to the cukes (or olives, or avocado), Mom!

The Lady of Shalott

I love baby brussels sprouts that have been boiled until tender. A little salt and pepper and butter. I have never had any brussels sprouts that measure up to that. YUM.

Tragically Ludicrous

Spruitjes! Somehow my sister made them last night and they were really good. I think it was basically like that, except without the cranberries and almonds.


We just need a new food category: savory fruit. That way it won't sound so weird calling squash fruit.


I...don't think I've ever thought of olives as vegetables or fruit? They're just olives.


@frigwiggin Hah. Out of all those, I thought olives (and avocados) most closely resembled "normal fruit" since they grow on trees and not in the ground. But yeah, olives are in a class of their own...in my heart. <3 you, olives.

Anne Helen Petersen

Jane, I love brussel sprouts times a billion, and this recipe sounds authentically great, but that image makes me want to barf overcooked brussels and broccoli all over.

Jane Marie

@Anne Helen Petersen i know. i did it on purpose. :)


No wrong.
1. Trim brussels sprouts and cut in half.
2. Put vegetable or peanut oil in a large saute pan, heat on medium-high heat.
3. Throw in brussels sprouts, preferably cut-side down, and cook, flipping occasionally to brown both sides.
4. Meanwhile mix in a bowl:
- a Tbsp or so of honey
- juice of one lime
- a Tbsp of soy sauce
- a lot of sriracha
- a drop or two of toasted sesame oil, if you want, and/or some sesame seeds
- some chopped up scallions, garlic, ginger, mint, or cilantro, or any combination of those, if you want, or not if you don't
5. When sprouts are softened and sort of burnt all over and look like a mess, turn heat to high and pour in sauce.
6. Cook, stirring frequently, until sauce is a blackened gunk coating the sprouts.
7. Eat.
8. Experience enlightenment.


@thematt Oh and thai fish sauce. In the sauce. A few squirts.

Lily Rowan

If you take that recipe and mix it into some farro, you have an amazing meal! Esp. with a little parm cheese. Or, at least, I've made a similar thing with pan-frying and pine nuts. But the sprouts and the cranberries = YES.


Brussels sprouts are best cut into halves and sauteed in olive oil, salt and pepper until the edges are crispy and burnt and the rest is tender and perfect, end of debate


I would like to talk more about beets, please.


@meetapossum OK, I will talk about beets with you! I love beets.

My favorite thing to do with beets is to just wrap them in tin foil and put them on the grill or on hot coals for like 3 hours. That's it. They are so good and smoky and naturally caramelized. What's your favorite thing to do with beets?


@Emby I usually just roast them, because I've only recently started cooking beets. I have, however, been eating them out of a can for years. There's also a restaurant in my neighborhood that makes a beet omelette and stuffs it with goat cheese and scallions; I need to learn how to make it so I can eat it all the time.

Daisy Razor

@meetapossum Pickled beets are surprisingly easy to make and are DELICIOUS.


@meetapossum There's a food truck here in Austin that makes beet home fries. I think they roast the beets then cut them into bite size chunks and deep fry them. Then they serve them with kewpie mayo, bonito flakes and green onion and OH MY GOD they're so good.

I bet you could get a similar effect by pan frying them though sicne deep frying is a bit of a pain in the ass.

The Attic Wife

@meetapossum I'm too impatient to do anything for three hours, so I just wrap them with oil, salt and pepper and pop them in a 425 degree oven for 45 minutes. If the timing is right, I sometimes take the beet juice drippings and add them to chili (note: I am extremely lazy and this only happens when the chili is on the stove right next to the oven).

Best beet salad is roasted beets with toasted almonds, feta and/or goat cheese crumbles, sliced red onion and a vidalia onion dressing.


@Daisy Razor I LOVE pickled beets, which is weird because normally I hate all pickled things. But I could eat pickled beets all day. (Unfortunately my husband hates beets -- not because of the taste, but because he did a science project in high school that involved cutting up and handling a shitload of beets and now he bears them a grudge.)


also, the next time someone tells you peanuts aren't actually nuts, you can inform them that neither are almonds, cashews, walnuts or pecans! I think hazelnuts are the only true botanical nuts that most people eat.


OR: roast with
-fresh minced ginger
-loads of garlic
-soy sauce
and generously salt & pepper.

the leaves caramelize and are so delicious and crisp YOU GUYS


By far the BEST Brussels sprouts ever!



I hate brussel sprouts. It's a fact. It's a thing. By a twist of luck, I have become completely unable to tollerate all cruciferous vegetables, which lost me my beloved broccoli, but allowed me to finally stop saying I hate brussel sprouts and begin to say "I can't eat brussel sprouts" which was the best gift.

But here's the thing about people, thoughtful, foodie people, who don't like your favorite veggie: leave them the f alone. Please. PLEASE. I used to say I don't like brussel sprouts and you know the ONLY thing that caused? People serving me SHIT TONS of brussel sprouts every time I came over. I've had them totally deleafed so they look like tiny salad fried with garlic. I've had them with all varieties of pork products. I've had them with three different kinds of nuts. Baked, roasted, fried, flash fried, even deep fried. And you know what? I didn't like any of them. Because, AS I TOLD YOU, I don't f'ing like brussel sprouts. I have never had someone say to me "I don't like chicken" and thought "well fuck you, I'm going to serve you a chicken that will change your mind and/or ruin your night." I have instead thought, "I will serve fish." SO WHY IS IT DIFFERENT WITH SPROUTS?! WHY, GODDAMNIT?!

Longest rant about sprouts ever is over.



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Brussel sprouts!!!! I love them (particularly cream-braised, which is so good, but so unhealthy).


Hey, Brussel sprouts are one of my favourite vegetables after I tried this recipe. It's italian, like me.
You just cook sprouts in the water but with just a bit of salt, when they are ready you take them and put on a pan with olive oil and a bit of butter. You just let them for few minutes until they start "ptsh-ptsh" (it's the sound). Then you turn off the burner, you cover all the sprouts with grated parmesan or a miscellanea of differents grated cheese, you put the cap on the pan and let it there for few minutes, until the cheese is almost melted. Then..come here and write me thanks!! ^^

by the way, what about this lie about sprouts and italy?! I wanna kowwwww


Roast them and then drizzle on a little glaze made of basalmic vinegar and maple syrup reduction-- sooooo good.

Jane Dough

Roasted or pan fried brussels sprouts with garlic and Trader Joe's Aioli mustard. Yum. I've also made salad with them-- slice raw sprouts very thin, add sliced up apples, chopped walnuts, and a balsamic vinaigrette. Also yum.


An interesting discussion is worth comment. I think that you should write more on this topic, it might not be a taboo subject but generally people are not enough to speak on such topics. To the next. Cheers madeira palsticacW


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