Like many people, chef
Sevie Cartularo did not fall in love
with Brussels sprouts at first bite.
“Mther would make them for Thanksgiving,” of Buono Appetito, in Shelburne. “They st the smell of them made me hate them.” Dennis Vieira of the Red Clover Inn in grow up with Brussels sprouts, which is more easily appreciated the bite-size green rst cooked them in a Boston restaurant.
He admits that the duck fat in which they were caramelized
Both chefs agree that the common home cooking
technique of boiling them down to mush does not do
sprouts any favors.
In early fall, Vieira likes to buy the first tiny marble-sized sprouts on the stalk from local farms, such as Radical
Roots, Boardman Hill Farm or Alchemy Gardens, and
sauté them whole with toasted garlic for a nutty flavor. He
leaves them a little crisp, and yes, he’s likely to use a little
pork or duck fat to help them out.
In winter, when local greens are at a premium, Vieira
might feature the larger more mature sprouts raw in the
salad he shares on the following page, their slight bitter edge
balanced perfectly with sweet nuggets of butternut squash,
reduced cider and rich bacon and mushrooms.
Despite his early, scarring experiences with Brussels
sprouts, Cartularo’s eyes (and palate) were opened to their
potential while cooking in a San Francisco restaurant
where they were deep-fried. He tweaked the recipe and
introduced it as a winter appetizer special when he came
home to run the kitchen at his family’s third-generation
Cartularo started evangelizing on the sprouts’ behalf
while working the bar on Sunday nights. “I can probably
count 15 regular customers I’ve changed from Brussels
sprouts haters to Brussels sprouts lovers with this dish,”
Cartularo says. “I’m kind of scared to ever take them off the
Among the fans of his fried sprouts with crispy capers,
garlic and parsley is Cartularo’s mother, who eats them
tossed with spaghetti.
Despite the success of this particular recipe, Cartularo
has yet to fully embrace the Brussels sprout. “It’s probably
the only way I’ll ever cook them,” he admits.
winter 2012–2013 • 69