These perfectly shaped petit cabbages are irresistible when pan-roasted. Sweet, nutty, and slightly crunchy, they’re intensely flavorful tiny packages.
But when you add a drop of maple syrup to the pan, their sweetness gets intensified, making them even more delectable.
Roasted with whole chestnuts, the Brussels sprouts acquire an earthy flavor that adds another dimension to the dish — and makes for a superb and versatile side dish that, come fall, almost always ends up on the menu.
*Note: You can find vacuum-packed chestnuts online.
- 3 1/2 sea salt
- 1 1/4 Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
- 1 unsalted butter
- 3 extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 maple syrup or brown sugar
- 4 vacuum-packed whole roasted chestnuts*
- 1/2 shallots, quartered and sliced finely
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Fill a large bowl with cold water and several ice cubes.
Fill a medium-sized pot with water and bring to a boil over high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of the salt and blanch the Brussels sprouts for 3 ½-4 minutes (depending on their size) until tender. Scoop them out with a slotted spoon and transfer to the ice water bath until cool. Drain on paper towels. Once dry, transfer to a bowl and set aside. (The Brussels sprouts can be blanched up to 1 day ahead. Refrigerate until ready to use.)
Heat a large heavy-bottomed skillet over high heat. Add the butter, olive oil, and maple syrup and stir well. As soon as the butter is melted, add the Brussels sprouts and chestnuts and toss carefully with 2 wooden spoons (so as not to break the chestnuts) until the ingredients are well coated with the oil. Sauté for 6-7 minutes until golden brown, tossing occasionally. Reduce heat to medium-high, add the shallots, remaining salt, and pepper, to taste, and sauté for 1-2 minutes until the shallots have softened. Transfer to a serving platter and serve immediately.