Momofuku-style brussels sprouts

Congrats to Mike for winning The Musing Bouche’s first-ever giveaway! Mike’s answer for the best things about turning 30?  I think the best thing about turning thirty is you get to stop trying to find yourself, and start creating yourself. I couldn’t have said it better…. Mike, you win a $65 gift certificate good at any of CSN’s 200 stores.

It’s meatless Monday today… though today’s recipe contains fish sauce. Does it count?

Confession: I was 27 before I ever ate a brussels sprout. Chalk it up to having parents who detest them, but seriously, I was 27 and at Toro restaurant with a friend. It was like an epiphany… somehow I’d always imagined that these tiny cabbages would taste horrible- like feet or bad cheese or something. Their bitter-sweetness and roasted crunch was completely unexpected and instantly I was hooked.

Since then, I’ve been roasting brussels sprouts regularly at home, just cutting their little heads in half in throwing them in a pan to roast with some olive oil and salt. I like them so much that way, I never bothered to try anything else. Until last week, that is. Intrigued by a recipe I’d seen from Momofuku, I broached the idea with my dinner-mates. I’m not usually so gun shy about new recipes, but this one included fish sauce, and I’m pretty wary of fish sauce. It tastes… like liquid fish. Not exactly pleasant. I feared that I’d ruin a pan of perfectly good brussels sprouts. Momofuku has yet to create something that doesn’t sound delicious though (I’m still dying to make their crack pie) and my dining companions were supportive of the idea, so I forged ahead.

I was so glad I did. The sauce was sweet and salty and spicy, complimenting the bitterness of the brussels sprouts just wonderfully. We couldn’t help but pick at them as we waited for the rest of the meal to cook (yes, I have timing issues). And while there was leftover chicken and leftover rice, there were no leftover brussels sprouts.

(A side note for you Momofuku groupies: David Chang is coming to town to lecture at Harvard on Dec. 6. Details here.)

I had to tweak the Momofuku recipe somewhat… I didn’t have any mint or cilantro on hand (though if I had, I certainly would have added them) and I wasn’t really into the whole puffed rice thing (not something I usually have in my house). I also cooked the brussels sprouts for about 10 minutes in the sauce in order to mellow out the fish flavor.  My recipe is below, with a link to the original.

Momofuku-Style Roasted Brussels Sprouts
(original recipe here)

2 pounds Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved lengthwise
3 Tablespoons olive oil
For dressing:
1/4 cup Asian fish sauce (preferably Tiparos brand)
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
1 garlic clove, minced
1 Tablespoon Sriracha (Rooster Sauce)

Heat oven to 450. Grease an 11×9 cake pan with olive oil and arrange brussels sprouts in it, cut side down. Roast 20-30 minutes until brussels sprouts are charred and dark brown.
Meanwhile, stir together the ingredients for the dressing. Pour over the roasted sprouts and return to the oven for 10 minutes. Serve warm.

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7 thoughts on “Momofuku-style brussels sprouts

  1. I hate Brussels sprouts but this sounds pretty good. Maybe I need to plan a trip to the Asian store. Or just look very close at Market Basket in the appropriate aisle 🙂

    • I will gladly give you a dose of fish sauce for these. We have a whole bottle. It’ll take years for us to finish it.

  2. Had that same experience at Toro! Although I liked Brussels sprouts before, having them brought caramelized to the table in a little pool of hot olive oil kind of spoilt me for life.

    Digging into my own not-quite-Toro-class imitation right now 🙂

  3. Yum, these sound awesome! I think Asian-style brussels sprouts are definitely the best, especially for people who aren’t sure if they like them or not. These sound amazing!

  4. Pingback: Comfort food « The Musing Bouche

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