Brussel sprouts with Bacon & Chestnuts

Love them or hate them, sprouts are on most dining tables during the festive period. My English friends have told me of their horror stories of sprouts being cooked for them as a child, but I assure you this recipe will win you over. Full of vitamins and iron, I personally love them.

Special equipment: 26cm hard anodized chef's pan.

Sprout1 MAIN

Ingredients Required

200g Brussel sprouts, bases trimmed
2.5L Water
10g Salt
20g Butter, unsalted
80g Bacon lardons
180g Chestnuts, peeled and blanched or pre-cooked ones are fine
Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper

Cooking Method

Planning ahead                    

The sprouts can be blanched and refreshed in iced water a day in advance.

To cook the sprouts

In a large pan, bring the water and salt to a roaring boil. Blanch the sprouts for 3 minutes, strain into a colander and refresh in iced water to stop the cooking.

Cut each sprout in half and drain onto a tray lined with a clean tea towel or thick kitchen paper to get them as dry as possible (which will make it easier to caramelise).

On a medium heat, in a large frying pan, heat the butter until it starts to foam (*1). Stir in the bacon lardons and cook for 2-3 minutes until they just start to brown.

Add the sprouts cut side down along with the blanched or cooked chestnuts and continue to caramelise for 3 minutes until lightly browned.

Remove from the heat, add a little pinch of salt and pepper, taste and either serve immediately or empty them out onto a clean tray and leave to cool for 15 minutes at room temperature before storing in the fridge until needed. To reheat, place in a pre-heated oven at 180°C for 10 minutes with a loose covering of tinfoil until piping hot.


Recipe © Raymond Blanc 2015.

Photograph © Jean Cazals 2015.