Saturday, November 26, 2011

Brussels Sprouts with Frizzled Leeks

Ingredients, Serves 4:
  • 2 1/2 lbs brussels sprouts cut into quarters
  • 3/4 cup extra virgin oil (EVO)
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon grainy mustard
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 3 tablespoons capers, rinsed and chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/3 cup shallots, minced
  • 2 oz anchovies, drained and minced
  • Frizzled Leeks:
    • 1 leek
    • 1/3  cup wondra flour
    • Salt and pepper to taste
    • Vegetable oil
Brussels sprouts have a bad rap in some circles.  I used to be in those circles until I tried a couple recipes that used them.  Wow, they have a wonderfully deep taste to them which goes well in the winter and especially for holiday meals.  Here is a great dish for the holidays.

Pre-heat the oven to 425F.  In a large pan or wok (I used my trusty wok), heat 1/4 cup of the EVO on medium high heat.  Add the brussels sprouts and mix thoroughly with the EVO.  Cook over medium heat for 10 - 15 minutes until they are softened, stirring and rotating the sprouts so they don't burn.  Turn off the heat and set aside.

Spread the walnuts onto a baking sheet and put them in the oven. Toast for about 8 minutes until golden brown.  Let cool and then coarsely chop.

In a medium size bowl, whisk the vinegar, mustard and honey together.  Whisk in a 1/2 cup EVO until it is emulsified.  Add the capers, garlic, and anchovies and mix well.  Salt and pepper to taste and set aside.

Cut the bottom and green top off of the leek.  Split the leek in half length-wise and flatten out each side.  Using a sharp knife, slice the leek into matchstick thin slices.  In a square baking dish, mix the flour, salt and pepper. Dredge the leek matchsticks in the flour.

In a large pan with high sides, pour in enough vegetable oil to a depth of 3/4".  Heat the oil until it reaches 325F.  Drop a handful of leek matchsticks into the oil and let them cook until slightly brown.  Remove them quickly and place them on a paper towel.  You can bend them and create a nice mount as you go.  Do this until all the leeks are done.

When ready to serve, re-heat the brussels sprouts, if necessary.  Add the brussels sprouts, sauce and walnuts to a large bowl mix well.  Pour into a serving dish and mound the frizzled leeks on top.  Serve it up!


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