Monday, February 17, 2014

Browned Butter Purple Cauliflower and Brussels Sprouts

Once again, I dive into my box of produce from Frieda's Specialty Produce and see what I can make.

This month, both purple cauliflower and purple Brussels sprouts were in the box, and I decided to use them together.

This is one of those recipes where amounts are sort of irrelevant. You could use a giant cauliflower or you could use a small one. Use a little hand full of Brussels sprouts, or use more.

Cauliflower is one of my favorite vegetables. I like it pretty much any way it's prepared, from completely raw to completely soft and pureed. I like it steamed, roasted, boiled, grilled, pickled or fried. I like it hot or cold. I like it as a salad, a soup, a side, or a snack.

Because I like cauliflower so much, I often rely on the simplest preparation methods. Often that's steaming in the microwave and adding a touch of butter.

This time, it was a little different. But that little bit actually made a pretty big impact.

Meawhile the Brussels sprouts were interesting, with purple and green leaves. I thought they'd make a great accent for the cauliflower, adding that bit of green.

What I thought was really interesting about this cooking method was that when the cauliflower came out of the microwave, it was more of a lavender color, but after it came out of the frying pan it was a deep, jewel-toned purple.

The color was simply stunning.

The flavor of the browned butter was really good, but it's almost worth doing, just for the color change. Give it a try, and see what you think.

Browned Butter Purple Cauliflower
and Brussels Sprouts

1 head purple cauliflower
1 cup purple Brussels sprouts
2 tablespoons butter
Salt, to taste

Break or cut the cauliflower into florets and put the florets into a microwave-safe bowl with about 1/2 cup of water. Microwave on high or on the vegetable-cooking setting if your microwave has one, until the florets are cooked to your liking. Drain the water.

Note: you can cover the cauliflower loosely during microwaving, if you like.

If the Brussels sprouts have tough ends or gnarly leaves, remove them. Cook just like you cooked the cauliflower.

Heat the butter in a saute pan. If you had a giant heat of cauliflower, you can certainly add more. Cook the butter until you see some golden brown bits and the butter smells nutty. Add the cauliflower and Brussels sprouts. Cook, stirring as needed, until you seen some browning on the cauliflower and the sprouts.

Transfer to a serving dish. Add salt, if desired. Serve hot.