October 17, 2012

Momofuku Roasted Brussels Sprouts

We haven't had the chance to go to any of David Chang's Momofuku restaurants in New York, and we do not own the Momofuku cookbook, but we probably need to make both of those things happen sooner rather than later. We've made a couple of recipes from the cookbook and every one has been not just good, but excellent. I'm tempted to say mind-blowing. The first thing we made was Bo Ssam - how could one not want to make it when the New York Times article featuring the recipe was called The Bo Ssam Miracle? So you see, perhaps my mind-blowing adjective is not hyperbole. Miracle, mind-blowing - whatever you call it, these recipes are worth trying. I could go on and on about the Bo Ssam, but I won't, because I'm here tonight to tell you about the magic David Chang has worked with Brussels sprouts.

First, a few words on Brussels sprouts. I've been confused by the spelling for a while, so I have checked and confirmed - Brussels sprouts, with a capital B and an -s at the end. They are apparently named after the city in Belgium, because they have historically been popular there. They are a member of the brassica genus, which includes all kinds of good stuff, like cabbage, cauliflower, and broccoli. They have a bad reputation, probably because when they're overcooked they get mushy and taste of sulfur - no wonder generations of kids revile them! If those kids could taste these sprouts the way David Chang prepares them, I think they would change their minds. This is a totally different take on this vegetable, with the combination of sweet, spicy, savory, and sour that much of Asian cuisine does so well. We added a few things to the recipe to make it into a main course rather than just a side.