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Chipotle-Lime Brussel Sprouts

December 23, 2010

I think Brussel sprouts get a bad rap. (Or Brussels sprouts, Oxford says both spellings are correct.) I hated them as much as everyone else when I was a kid, but as an adult, I’ve come to really appreciate the slightly bitter flavor, so good with just a little salt and butter.

Apparently the Brits agree, because Brussel sprouts turn out to be traditional part of their Christmas dinner. Of course, once I found out it was a tradition, I had to mess with it. Bring on the chillies!

If you’re looking for a way to trick your kids into eating the little gems, this probably won’t work. However, this recipe is a delicious way to spice-up the maligned vegetable without losing it’s sprouty essence.

The most-time consuming part of this is prepping the sprouts to begin with. Trim the stem and any unpretty outer leaves and cut each sprout in half. Here’s a question for the crazy kids back home: if you buy the whole Brussel sprout stalks from Berkeley Bowl, what do you do with the stalk?

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and drop them in to blanch for a couple minutes. Drain them right away. Meanwhile, whisk together some honey and lime juice.

Heat up some olive oil and add one minced chipotle pepper. I rehydrated a dried one, but you can also use the canned kind (usually in adobo sauce.) Chipotles can be H-O-T, so dial it back if you’re shy.

Add the sprouts and drizzle the honey-lime juice over them.

Cook on high heat until the sprouts are lightly browned and the liquid is mostly evaporated. I also threw in the lime pieces for a little extra flavor, plus they look pretty.

Happy Holidays!

Chipotle-Lime Brussel Sprouts

Serves 4 as a side dish

1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 lb fresh Brussel sprouts, washed, trimmed and cut in half
1 chipotle pepper (rehydrated or canned), finely minced – Use a different pepper or considerably less if you’re shy of spice.
1 Tablespoon honey
Juice of 1 lime (about 2½ Tablespoons)

1. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add Brussel sprouts and blanch for 2-3 minutes, until barely tender. Drain.
2. Whisk together honey and lime juice in a small bowl.
3. Heat oil in a skillet. Add minced chipotle to hot oil and fry, stirring, for one minute.
4. Add Brussel sprouts to the skillet and drizzle with honey-lime mixture.
5. Cook over high heat for a few minutes until the sprouts are lightly browned.

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