Friday, November 11, 2011

Brussels Sprouts in Breadcrumbs--As Simple as That

How excited can you get about Brussels sprouts? I suppose, it's difficult to like them or hate them. But with the upcoming holidays I decided to write about them anyways. I also hope that this simple idea may gain some fans, in particular, among those who like me, actually like Brussels sprouts.

If you have ever visited Poland you might have noticed something that I have realised only recently, while writing about Polish food. In Poland we serve many vegetables (and not only) in breadcrumbs. I do not know why. It could be our love for breads, or maybe just we always had these dry bread leftovers that we did not like to throw away, or maybe we just like the taste of food coated in breadcrumbs.

I need to say that some vegetables served this way taste exceptionally good. A fresh yellow, green, or purple beans that we pick up straight from the stalks in the summer, and cauliflower, or fall Brussels sprouts taste really good coated in gold breadcrumbs. That is my favorite way of eating these vegetables, especially when I am in Poland where at the farmers markets they are sold fresh, harvested early in the morning the same day.

At this point I need to stress that breadcrumbs you can buy at the supermarket do not do the trick. Those in American stores are often sweet and not crunchy enough. The best way is to make them as we do it in Poland by griding dry white rolls or baguettes (the baguette flour is supposed to be of the best quality). So if you have dry baguette leftover in your kitchen, take them out and using a fine grater or food processor turn them into plain and crispy breadcrumbs. Then get some Brussels sprouts and make this Polish classic dish just like that, without any spices and flavors, a bit crunchy, and slightly bitter-sweet.

Brussels Sprouts in Breadcrumbs
(Serves four)

1 lb Brussels sprouts,
5 tbsp of good quality butter with high fat content (Keller's butter or Kerrygold Irish butter would be best),
3 tbsp bread crumbs,
1 tbsp salt,
1 tbsp sugar.

1. In a medium pot boil water with salt and sugar. Add Brussels sprouts and cook for about 20-30 minutes, depending on how soft you like them to be. Drain the Brussels sprouts on a colander.
2. Preheat a large frying pan. Add breadcrumbs and toast them first on a dry pan, stirring continuously until they turn gold. Add pieces of butter and mix them with breadcrumbs, stirring all the time.

When butter starts to bubble add Brussels sprouts and coat them with breadcrumbs. Fry for about one minutes.You can also put Brussels sprouts on the serving plate and pour over bubbling breadcrumbs  mixture.

Serve as meat accompaniment or alone, if you are a great Brussels sprouts amateur like me.

No comments: