One of the perks of blogging is receiving freebies. Recently I was contacted by Ocean Mist Farms out in CA with an offer of free Brussels sprouts. Even though SP and I are not exactly fans of the little sprouts, I couldn't pass up a chance to try some fresh from the farm. Imagine my shock and delight when a huge box arrived at my house one afternoon and inside was all this:
This amounted to approximately 5 pounds of Brussels sprouts. Yikes! Thank goodness I was able to Google freezing techniques and process most of these for future use. I wouldn't want all this to go to waste. See below for freezing directions.
I used about 1 1/2 pounds of sprouts to make a dish I've had printed out since Thanksgiving - Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Mushrooms and Cream. Since we weren't fans of the sprouts roasted by themselves, I figured the addition of mushrooms and heavy cream would only make them more palatable.
I can't say this dish changed our minds about Brussels sprouts but it was certainly good. Will I find myself craving sprouts anytime soon, probably not. But this is still a tasty dish. Unfortunately I couldn't find chanterelles at my supermarket, but I hear they would make this dish even better. Regular button mushrooms were fine in a pinch.
Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Chanterelles and Cream
1-1/2 lb. Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved lengthwise
5 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 lb. wild mushrooms, such as chanterelles or hedgehogs, halved if small or cut into 1-inch wedges
1 large shallot, thinly sliced
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 cup heavy cream
Freshly ground black pepper
Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 450°F.
Put the Brussels sprouts on a rimmed baking sheet, and drizzle with 3 tablespoons of the olive oil; toss to coat. Spread the Brussels sprouts in an even layer and season generously with salt. Roast until tender and browned, about 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.
Heat a 12-inch skillet over high heat. When the pan is hot, add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and 2 tablespoons of the butter. When the butter has melted, add the mushrooms in an even layer, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are golden-brown and tender and the mushroom liquid (if any) has evaporated, 5 to 8 minutes. Season to taste with salt and transfer to a plate.
Set the skillet over medium-high heat and add the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter. When the butter has melted, add the shallot, season with a pinch of salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender and golden, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the wine and cook until reduced by half, about 1 minute. Return the mushrooms to the pan and add the Brussels sprouts and cream. Stir in a few grinds of pepper and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the cream thickens and coats the vegetables nicely, 3 to 4 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.
How to Freeze Brussels Sprouts
1. Select green, firm and compact heads. Examine heads carefully to make sure they are free from insects. Trim, removing coarse outer leaves.
2. Wash thoroughly in cool water, then sort into small, medium and large sizes.
3. Bring a large pot of water to a brisk boil. Blanch small heads 3 minutes, medium heads 4 minutes and large heads 5 minutes. Cool promptly in ice water.
4. Drain and package in Ziploc or vacuum bags, excluding as much air as possible. Seal and freeze.
Disclaimer: The Brussels sprouts featured in this post were provided to me free of charge by Ocean Mist Farms. I was not compensated for writing this post and all views expressed are my own.