[75] Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Garlic

How to Cook Everything, Revised Edition by Mark Bittman

One of the tricks to planning Thanksgiving, they say, is to make as much ahead as possible. I believe them. I believe them as I have never believed them before. I still don’t know who “they” are, but I utterly believe them.

I just didn’t listen to them much.

Honestly, this is because I struggled to plan a Thanksgiving feast for four that would still be fairly traditional, with way too much food, without being WAY too much food. I also couldn’t decide what really needed to be made the day of the celebration. Some things, I knew could be made ahead (the mashed potatoes and cranberries, for example).

I knew the brussels sprouts really needed to be made Thanksgiving day. I hesitated on roasting them, since my oven would be fairly busy most of the day, but decided that a roast during the turkey’s rest period would be just fine. Plus, while the bacon brussels sprouts were amazing, I had actually wanted to try this one the first time I ever bought brussels sprouts. After all, GARLIC!

I nearly abandoned them, though. I was super stressed out by the end of the day. So stressed and busy, in fact, that I forgot to take photos of the sprouts and the potatoes. That’s a bummer. I was worried we made too much food, but that it was all mediocre. Bill even tried to convince me to chill out and let the sprouts go. But I couldn’t.

Because, otherwise we wouldn’t have anything green on the table. And that would just not do.h2. Ingredients

1/4 c extra virgin olive oil
1 lb brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved

5 cloves garlic, peeled – more if you’d like

Salt and freshly ground pepper

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

h2. Instructions

Preheat the oven to 450F. Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a large, oven-proof skillet. When the oil shimmers, place the sprouts in the oil in a single layer, cut side down. Add the garlic, then sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Cook, undisturbed, until the sprouts begin to brown (~3 – 5 minutes), then place in the oven. Cook, shaking the pan occasionally, until the sprouts are quite brown and tender (~30 minutes). Taste and adjust seasonings as needed, then drizzle with the vinegar and serve.

h2. Cooking and Consumption Notes

h3. Cooking

Bittman isn’t kidding when he says, “large, oven-proof skillet”. I did not use my largest skillet, and that was a mistake. Rather, I used a skillet that is probably as large in volume, but the sides slope up rather dramatically. It’s really my “favorite skillet”:http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00006FX83?ie=UTF8&tag=metaco-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00006FX83 so I end up using it probably more than is appropriate. Like, say, for this recipe. Thus, because of the high sides, it was impossible to get the sprouts into a single layer. That was my first mistake.

My second, and probably more dreadful mistake, was that I simply burned the sprouts in the oven. Not all of them, but a significant minority of them. That was sad.

My final mistake was in forgetting the balsamic vinegar drizzle. Boo to me.

h3. Consumption

Despite the mistakes, these were actually quite tasty. I admit that I only had one serving, but it was quite a big one and I ate every sprout on my plate (even the burned ones). Even though it was Thanksgiving, and there was so much other food.

I know they were pretty good, in fact, because our guests both had seconds. That’s always a good sign of a tasty Thanksgiving dish.

Bill, I think, didn’t like them so much. However, he clearly didn’t dislike them utterly, as he suggested we try this recipe again this week. We’ll make it tomorrow or Thursday, and I’ll make a second post letting you know how it came out when I was more focused. Also, I’ll take pictures this time.

One thought on “[75] Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Garlic

  1. Interesting recipe! It would never have occurred to me to pre-brown the sprouts in a skillet before putting them in the oven. I find that roasting them straight in gets them crispy enough on those yummy little edges.

    That said, they work much better on a high heat in the oven than a lower one. I do 30-40 minutes at 400 degrees and they are crispy and only just beginning to burn. I just toss them in olive oil and balsamic before they go in the oven and they’re good to go.

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