Jack Wasn’t Kidding With That Stalk


Somehow TV brings out the best of my food. Yes, TV is accused of gluttonous atrocities, but in my circle, it gives us an excuse to create inventive snacks. Vio decided on an all appetizer food party for the 2nd episode of Top Chef. I clearly obliged, although I really wasn’t sure what to make. I knew, however, it had to involve brussel sprouts.

When I went to the farmers market this past weekend I bought about 3/4 lb loose sprouts. But then I wandered over to another stand and saw something wondrous – sprouts on the stalk. All at once I felt totally enlightened and totally embarrassed. I try be cognizant of where my food comes from, try to think about where it grew and by who. I try to think beyond the super agri-industrial complex. But, fuck. I honestly have never thought about how brussel sprouts actually physically push through the earth. Apparently it’s on a stalk. I’ll need to find out a bit more (JoeHoya?) but for now, I knew I needed to eat my way through this first round so I could buy some on the stalk next weekend, the last weekend of the Mt. Pleasant farmers market <tear.>

Wait, one more thing. Okay, two.  Does anyone know why sprouts get such a bad wrap?  They’re totally delicious. And, why are there two spellings for the veggie?  80P forbid me to use the “brussels sprouts” version.  I had to eradicate that first “s.”

And now the recipe

Well, besides that I knew I wanted to incorporate b-sprouts, I also wanted to make this crazy sauce that I recently dreamed up during a staff meeting. I purchased a lovely bunch of parsley, perhaps the last of the season, so I figured a sauce is a great way to use up a lot of the herb. Oh, and I hate herb garnishes.  Fucking actually use the herb, plates are for decoration. I get pisted easily, huh?

Curried Parsley Sauce with Brussel Sprouts and Potato

Simmer large cubes of potato (about 3 medium sized) in salted, simmering water (partially covered) for about 10 or so minutes.  Drain and then get them browning on all sides in a large pan with salt, pepper, oil and butter.  Don’t stir.  Let it sit on each side until brown, then flip.  Total pain in the ass, but worth it.

Throw in a blender: small serrano chili, 2 cloves of garlic, bunches of parsley, olive oil, 2 tablespoons (?) yellow curry powder, 2 tsp (?) fresh ginger, salt, pepper, a bit of lime zest and lime juice – the whole thing.

Brussel Sprouts
I mostly followed 101’s recipe, except for the cheese.  And then because this was supposed to be more of an app, I split the b-sprouts in half again and re-browned the newly cut side.

As an app, I mixed the potatoes and brussel sprouts together and then placed the dip in the middle and stuck a few toothpicks in the food.  But if this were a side, I probably would have tossed everything right in the sauce.  And maybe served over rice?  Too much starch?  Over swiss chard?  Too much green?  Okay, maybe it is best as an app.

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  • Britannia November 20, 2008  

    This is great. Especially with the holiday season approaching. My brother hated sprouts and was always an issue around the dinner table over Christmas. The best I can do is sautee them in a little s&p and garlic.

  • Liza's sis November 20, 2008  

    This is wonderful! Brussel sprouts are my favorite vegetable. Easy to roast with evoo and s&p at 425 for 15 minutes, turning once. Yummy!

    Liza, are we having brussel sprouts for thanksgiving? 🙂

  • dad gansie November 20, 2008  

    effin neat gansie, let’s do it…of course i’ll be your sou chef and clean up all the mess as usual

  • Anon 1:50 November 20, 2008  

    Available in season up here in Michigan, sprouts-on-the-stalk, can be snipped off into simmering, lemony (acidulated) water, cooked to YOUR choice of tenderness and dressed with just a shake of parmesan and butter and…

    Even children will wolf them down!

    Softened, and pickled with some nice rice wine vinegar and mirin, a healthy shot of your favorite hot sauce and ‘fridge jarred’, these are a KILLER snack with a cold beer or glass of cold white wine!

    There is something about the stalk that keeps the sprouts from becoming bitter… You really don’t have to grease them up or bake them to death, and I, (for one) have a sneaky hunch that these might be a grand substitute for artichoke hearts and hearts-o-palm in salads, if properly prepped!

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