- Contribution and Recipe by Kevin Lee, AVP, Office Solutions Sales & Marketing, Sharp Electronics of Canada
To celebrate National Brussels Sprouts Day, I am reposting this blog originally posted on Dec 2020. This dish was inspired while on a business trip that took Kevin and his colleagues to our Sharp Manufacturing Company of America (SMCA) factory in Memphis, Tennessee. After spending much of the day at the plant, the team ended up going to a Memphis restaurant for dinner. This dish was ordered as an appetizer by his colleague Rolland, but was coaxed into trying it. After the first bite, Kevin’s taste-buds were awakened to the flavours of that Brussels sprout dish that he will never soon forget. He loved it so much, that when he came home, he had to recreate this dish! After a few tries, Kevin finally got the flavour and texture he desired (and remembered) … and we are so pleased that he is sharing this dish with all of us.
There are many debates on which way is best to prepare Brussels sprouts. You have the older generation that will attest that over-cooked, boiled Brussels sprouts is how it should be served, this is how I recall it as a child. Because of this childhood trauma, I never touched these lovely little green mini-cabbages again until I was in my thirties.
Up until a couple of days ago, Brussels sprouts were always prepared on a roasting pan, mixed with balsamic vinegar, salt & pepper, and popped into the oven at least a couple times a week as a side dish.
I decided to finally give Kevin’s recipe a try (on the stovetop) with my cast iron skillet this weekend, and SHOCKING to me … but I’m hooked on this entirely new (and faster) preparation method. Charred and crispy on the outside, lightly caramelized and tender on the inside, these Brussels sprouts taste amazingly good, even addictive!
If I haven’t convinced you to try Brussels sprouts yet, then perhaps telling you that they are so good for you, will! They contain vitamins (such as A, B6, C and K) and minerals (like manganese, folate, iron, magnesium and potassium). These vitamins and minerals are good for your immune system, heart and bones. They are also low-calorie, fat-free (when not prepared with added oil), and full of fibre, which is great for keeping your digestive system running smoothly.
So which is better? Oven-roasted or pan-roasted? To be honest, I enjoy them both. I love the fact that you can toss the sprouts in the oven and let it cook while I’m busy preparing other meal items versus standing guard over the stove-top ensuring they don’t burn. I think, the most distinct difference is texture. Oven-roasted Brussels sprouts tend to be tender all the way through the interior, allowing it to truly melt in your mouth. While pan-roasted Brussels sprouts tend to be firmer, cooked more on the outside and slightly tender in the interior. I enjoy them both for different reasons and appreciate the variation. You’ll have to try both methods and see what you think.
So if you’re looking for a new way to enjoy these beautiful little bulbs, you’re going to be happy you’re reading this recipe. We hope you enjoy it!
How to Trim Brussels Sprouts
Before trimming the Brussels sprouts, make sure you wash them in a colander, ensuring all the dirt is removed.
Dry them on a kitchen towel for a bit before cutting.
Use a knife to cut the tough stem, remove any yellow or damaged leaves.
Cut each Brussels sprout in half lengthwise, from tip to trimmed end.
If you come across one of those “monster” sprouts, feel free to quarter it.
All you need to make these Memphis-Inspired Brussels sprouts are olive oil, red wine vinegar, soy sauce, oyster sauce, ground pepper, and soft cheese for the finishing touch.
- Brussels sprouts, washed, trimmed and halved (3 cups)
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil (2 tablespoons)
- Red Wine Vinegar (1 tablespoon)
- Soy Sauce (1 tablespoon)
- Oyster Sauce or Hoisin Sauce (1 teaspoon)
- Freshly ground black pepper (pinch)
- Handful of Soft Cheese (Boursin Garlic & Fine Herbs / Feta Cheese / Parmesan / Goat Cheese / or any other crumbly cheese)
- Prep Time: 10 mins
- Cooking Time: 15 mins
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet for approximately 2 minutes over medium heat.
- Add the Brussels sprouts and toss to coat. Flip the sprouts so they are facing down (cut-side down) and let sit undisturbed for approx 5-7 minutes, until they develop a dark, caramelized sear (as if you are charring).
- Add red wine vinegar, soy sauce and oyster sauce in a 2:2:1 ratio (Kevin suggests applying 1 teaspoon at a time, and apply based on your liking)
- Hint: I didn’t have oyster sauce on hand, so I substitute it with Hoisin sauce. It added a sweeter flavour, so I added a bit more red wine vinegar to counter balance the sweetness.
- Add the pepper, and stir.
- Continue cooking, stirring every few minutes, until the Brussels sprouts are all browned and starting to tenderize in the centre (about 5 to 7 additional minutes).
- Transfer to plate and sprinkle with a handful of crumbled soft cheese
- Hint: I also sprinkled this dish with a handful of pomegranate seeds for colour and additional nutritional value
- Serve immediately!
- Hint: This dish can be served as an appetizer and goes really well with a glass of white wine (Pinot Grigio perhaps)