20 December 2011

Brussels Sprouts Hash with Gruyère

There is no light in my flat. The sun literally never shines into my windows. The shortest days of the year are here, and the sun doesn't get high enough in the sky to crest over the hill I live on and illuminate my living room. The good news is that I've been so busy in the last few months that I didn't even notice that the sun was setting at 3:30 until two days ago. So, I haven't had a chance to get depressed about it, and in one (short) day, the days will begin to grow longer again, spring will come, and I'll have enough sunlight in my flat to take decent photos. Then, before I know it, we'll all be wearing skirts and sandals and getting some serious freckles. Being crazy-ass busy is the only way to get through the winter, in my mind. All of this has nothing to do with the recipe - I just thought you should know.

People generally don't like brussels sprouts. I didn't like them for years, until I decided that I should. As a vegetarian in an omnivore's world, I don't really have license to push many veggies aside. I've tried various methods over the years, but never hit on anything spectacular - until now. This is so good.

The trick is to never, ever boil those suckers. Don't even think about it. Get them nice and browned. Crispy. Delicious all over.

Another trick: don't miss the vinegar. You need a little acidity to break through the strong flavours here. I wanted to use lemon juice, but I discovered too late that I was actually out of lemons. White wine vinegar does the job nicely. It really brightens everything up and rounds out the flavour profile.

Brussels Sprouts Hash with Gruyère
original recipe by me!

250g brussels sprouts, trimmed and quartered
3T olive oil
1 medium potato
small knob of butter (about 1.5T)
1 small leek (or half of a normal-sized leek)
splash white wine vinegar (about 1 tea)
25g Gruyère, grated
sea salt and pepper to taste

Sauté brussels sprouts in olive oil in a heavy-bottomed skillet over medium heat, tossing occasionally to brown on all sides. Season with salt and add diced potato. You'll think the sprouts might be burning, but it's ok. They need to get really brown. Don't stress.

Once potatoes have begun to brown, add butter and chopped leek. Season with additional salt and pepper if desired. Cook until potatoes are done and leeks have begun to brown. Add a splash of white wine vinegar, toss to incorporate. Grate over gruyere and allow to melt in the skillet, serve immediately.

Serves 2 as a side (or 1 as a main - this was totally my whole lunch).


  1. This looks delicious! I'm totally crazy about Gruyère!! I'll try to follow your steps since I believe (it's almost my philosophy when it comes to food) that if you think you don't like to eat something it's because you haven't eaten it in the right form (right for each one of us, of course). After that experience, we come to like it in different forms.

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  3. I made this today for dinner and it was very good! Sligtly dry, but I had a beer with it and this solved the problem :)

  4. @monika - I like the way you think! :)