Buttered Brussels Sprouts: Coles de Bruseles con Mantequilla

Oh, you're gonna love this.

And, by the way, they're called Brussels Sprouts - four S's: two in the middle of bruSSels and one at the end (brusselS) plus the one at the end of sproutS. Although if you had only one sprout I guess it would be a Brussels Sprout_ after all. But they do tend to be in groups rather than dealt with individually. The important thing being that there's always an S at the end of Brussels; it's the name a a very nice city in Belgium; half French and half Dutch. I once missed a train connection there.

The 2nd by the way is that Brussels sprouts have tested as effective against mammary carcinogenesis in Sprague-Dawley rats. They might be anti-carcinogenic.

It's nearing the end of the true BS season and so I'm doing them again before it's too late. This one's more or less according to the bible, Mastering the Art of French Cooking by the lovingly remembered Julia Child (no S at the end there). Page 450 for those following along at home

There's two steps to this and one secret to success. The secret is - don't overcook the damn things or they'll end up tasting sulfurous. Bah! The two steps are 1) Blanching and 2) Cooking.

So, this is what I actually did…


  • 450 gr Brussels Sprouts [1#]
  • ¼ t salt
  • ¼ t pepper, white
  • ¼ C butter
  • ¼ C salt (for the boiling water)
  • 1 sheet pastry paper [waxed paper]

  • large glass casserole (to put the sprouts in a single layer)

Oven at 175C [350F]

Step 1 - Blanching them
  1. Trim the base of each sprout
  2. Peel any grungy outer leaves
  3. Poke a cross in the base of each sprout (to ensure even & rapid cooking) with the your knife
  4. Boil an exceedingly large pot of water (that way the sprouts won't drop the temp too low when you toss them in) - high heat.
  5. Toss in the sprouts & return to a boil then lower the heat
  6. Boil softly for 6 minutes
  7. Then dump into a colander [sieve] and rinse with cold water (so that they're not too hot to handle)
Step 2 - Into the oven
  1. Coat the casserole lightly with some butter
  2. Coat the paper lightly with some butter
  3. Melt the rest (most) of the butter
  4. Put the sprouts into a glass casserole in a single layer
    • heads up
  5. Drizzle butter over Brussels Sprouts
    • melt some more and drizzle if you run out half way through (I know I would [and did])
  6. Sprinkle lightly with salt & pepper
  7. Cover loosely with the buttered paper
  8. Bake for 15 minutes
  9. == Done ==
Serve warm

  1. Fresh fresh fresh. Get decent sprouts. Not soft ones which will not cook nicely at all.
  2. All the sprouts should be the same size. Toss any that are twice as big as the rest - or twice as small.
  3. You can blanch these things up to a day ahead and stash them in the fridge
  4. Always blanch Brussels Sprouts (and toss the water out). I believe it eliminates some bitterness

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