brussel sprouts, 2 ways

by matkonation | 30.09.12

By:Danya Weiner

As a kid there where some veggies I just refused to eat, I think that most of them were the probably green- peas, broccoli, green beans and of course Brussels sprouts.

I can still hear my mother’s voice in my head saying “Danya, finish your Brussels sprouts or you can’t leave the table…” I must admit, I hated them back then.

A few years ago I was photographing a cook book in the north of  Israel and I found myself once more face to face with this hated veg. On the spur of the moment , decided to try it again and was suddenly in love with this baby of a vegetable. Since then, I have made it many times and each time in a different way because it really soaks up many types of  flavors, although, you can sometimes bite into a sprout that is soooo bitter, it can take the fun away from the whole dish.

Finding fresh Brussel sprouts is very hard in Israel, they grow from Nov to may and if  you ever find them fresh in the farmers market I would defiantly take a packet home. Now I know why my mother insisted I eat them as a kid, they are very high in vitamin A and C, folic acid and fibers.

The way I see it, the only downside is that this veg is terribly hard on the stomach and can really make you fart…(don’t say I didn’t warn you).

Deanna and I decided we each make our favorite Brussel sprout dish, and so we bring to you, two very different versions of this veg. In my version I par boil the sprouts and then drain and bake them in the oven with olive oil and spices. Deanna’s version is a bit more work but it’s defiantly worth it, she grilled the sprouts and then mixed them with vinaigrette and bread crumbs and resulting with a beautiful warm salad.

Deanna’s Brussel sprouts

Danya had a thing for Brussel sprouts and asked me if I have a good recipe. Personally I didn’t, but I do remember eating the most delicious Brussel sprouts at one of my most favorite LA eateries, Pizzaria Mozza. I also recalled that my mom had recently bought me the Mozza cookbook, and so I turned the pages and there it was- the recipe for their delicious Brussel sprouts. I adapted this a bit, but it’s just as good as I remember.

Don’t be turned off by this recipe If your doing the kosher thing. Just skip the bacon part. They will still be delicious.

You may have some leftover breadcrumbs and vinaigrette, but both can be stored and used for other things- breadcrumbs, try with our famous schnitzel and the vinaigrette can be used to dress your favorite salad.

Ingredients for 6-8 servings:

For the bread crumbs:
2 tablespoons olive oil
125 gr./1/4 pound bacon, finely chopped
1 cup plain breadcrumbs
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1/4 cup chopped chives
2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves

For the brussel sprouts:
1 pound Brussel sprouts, fresh or frozen and defrosted, cut into halves
3 tablespoons olive oil

For the vinaigrette:
2 tablespoons chopped shallots (from about two small ones, or one big one)
1/2 teaspoon salt
Fresh ground pepper to taste
1/4 cup sherry vinegar (or red wine vinegar)
1/4 cup olive oil

1. Make the breadcrumbs: Preheat oven to 180C/350F. Heat the olive oil in a pan over medium heat and add the bacon. Cook for about five minutes until brown and crisp. Leave the oil in the pan but transfer the bacon to paper towels to drain.
2. Add the breadcrumbs to the pan with the oil and stir just to coat the breadcrumbs in the oil.
3. Place the breadcrumbs on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake them in the oven, stirring once or twice, until they are golden brown (about 10 minutes).Add the bacon, parsley, chives and thyme to the breadcrumbs and return to the oven to bake for an additional 10 minutes. Allow to cool while preparing the Brussel sprouts.
4. Prepare the Brussel sprouts: heat the olive oil in a pan on medium heat until very hot. Using tongs, add some of the Brussel sprouts, cut side down. Cook for about 4-5 minutes, until browned and then flip them over and cook until browned on the other side. Repeat with the remaining sprouts, adding more oil to the pan as necessary. Drain on paper towels to remove excess oil.
5. Make the vinaigrette: place the shallots, salt, pepper and vinegar in a bowl and stir to combine. Allow to sit for 10 minutes to allow the flavors to mix. Gradually whisk in the olive oil and continue whisking until vinaigrette is slightly thickened.
6. Assemble the dish: toss the Brussel sprouts with vinaigrette and then coat with the bread crumbs. Top with additional breadcrumbs and serve either warm or at room temperature.

Danya’s brussel sprouts

Ingredients for 6-8 servings:

1 bag of frozen brussel sprouts (800gr’)

1/4 cup olive oil

1 teaspoon minced garlic

sea salt/ freshly ground pepper

6-8 sage leaves

Grated parmesan for serving



  1. Heat your oven to 350F/180C
  2. In a big pot, boil a large amount of water. Cook the sprouts for 8-10 minutes, until they are soft. Strain and leave to cool until they can be hand held.
  3. In a big bowl (or the pot that was used for par boiling) mix olive oil, garlic and sage leaves.
  4. Using your hands, tear theBrussels in half and put them in the olive oil mix. Mix well until they are completely coated.
  5. Transfer the sprouts to a oven pan lined with baking paper. Season with sea salt and pepper.
  6. Bake for 40 min or until some are a little burnt.
  7. Serve warm with grated parmesan cheese.

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