Sunday, January 13, 2013

Hey -- I'm trendy!

For the last several months I have been reading that Brussels sprouts have become trendy among food aficionados.  For once I'm out there with the trendsetters!  I don't think I ever ate Brussels sprouts until five years ago, but since then it has rocketed to the top of my list.

Since discovering that I liked the little darlings, I most often cooked them by slicing them in half down the axis and sauteeing them.  Often I would add some white wine to the pan after the cut halves were browned, then cover the pan and let them simmer for a bit.

my old way -- halved

But recently I tried a new method that I think will become my new default: slicing them a bit less than a quarter-inch thick.  Because they're thinner, they cook faster and don't need the additional simmer time, or the white wine.  I do think they benefit from a bit of acid, so have taken to squeezing lemon over the top when they hit the plate.

my new way -- sliced

We had some people over for dinner before Christmas and I thought why not be trendy and serve Brussels sprouts.  To my amazement my fashionable menu was met with emotions ranging from guarded neutrality to outright disapproval.  One wife proclaimed, "If you can get my husband to eat Brussels sprouts it will be a miracle!"  The guests helped themselves to teaspoonfuls and politely declined seconds.

I guess you have to choose your audience carefully before you exhibit your trendsetting credentials.  I am pleased to report that everybody loved the pot roast and gravy, a big trend from the 1930s.


  1. Well phooey on them. I LOVE Brussels sprouts and have been cooking them since long before they became trendy, usually in olive oil with lemon juice, salt and pepper tossed in at the end. I've also been a big fan of kale for about 15 years and now that's becoming trendy. Kale is good with a splash of balsamic vinegar at the end ... and some dried cranberries and pecans for the holidays.

  2. Yup, all the more for me.

    Leftover sauteed Brussels sprouts are good (cold or warm) with some mustard vinaigrette.

    The only thing I do with kale is put it (raw and julienned) into hot soup. I guess I should try cooking it and see what happens.

  3. I just steam my Brussels sprouts and eat them. Mind you, I would have eaten your thin-sliced ones, but I like my vegetables plain most of the time.

    Mary Anne in Kentucky

  4. I had avoided Brussels sprouts for years until I was given some a few years ago. I discovered a recipe similar to yours--sauteed and then finished with a little lemon juice and they are a favorite of ours. Even convinced my daughter to try them cooked this way and her family loves them--well, not her three-year-old who would probably agree with your guests, but then he is three years old and perhaps he'll like them next month.