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Skillet-Charred Brussels Sprouts with Garlic, Anchovy, and Chili
Done well, roasted Brussels sprouts shine with a balance of sweet and savory. But nailing that perfect balance calls for a long stay in a hot oven. And even then, the results can disappoint. Pile too many sprouts in the pan and they steam, turning mushy and dull. Let them go too long and they get dry and bitter. We wanted better, more reliable results, and in much less time. We found an answer in the charred Brussels sprouts at Gjelina (chef Travis Lett’s Los Angeles restaurant). They get a rough, almost steak-like treatment. Using a cast-iron skillet allowed Lett to achieve in minutes what normally took us a half-hour or more in an oven. A well-seasoned cast-iron pan was key to this recipe, and to comfortably accommodate the sprouts, the pan needed to be at least 12 inches in diameter. Tossing the sprouts with oil and a little honey before cooking prevented them from drying out and toughening in the hot pan. Small and medium sprouts tasted better than large sprouts, which retain more bitter bite.
pound small to medium Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
01In a large bowl, toss the sprouts with 1 tablespoon of oil, 2 teaspoons of honey and ¼ teaspoon of salt. Set aside.
Mary Virginia W., don't worry you didn't miss a step. "The remaining two teaspoons" is referring to the honey, which was divided in the recipe.
My husband and I loved these Brussels Sprouts. I followed the recipe exactly. I would have liked a bit more garlic flavor so would probably add one more clove next time or use slightly larger ones. Even so, the flavor combination of the honey, garlic, lemon juice and anchovies along with the red pepper flakes was a perfect addition to the Brussels Sprouts. My cast iron skillet is now my preferred method for cooking Brussels Sprouts.
I struggled with this recipe - because of the way the recipe is written, I ended up with too much honey on some sprouts and none on others - I would mix the honey and oil together next time and then toss sprouts in mixture. Also, cleaning the char off of my cast iron skillet where the honey had turned into carbon was a real pain, too. I think I'll stick with my usual convection oven, high heat roasting for sprouts and add the garlic/lemon/anchovy afterward.
Was there a step with the lemon juice that I missed? I don't see it turn up till the last step, and it says "the remaining two teaspoons".