in flirtations with priceless feelings this time of year. there is a loud clamor, a rush, a hush, and then a different kind of rush – a flood, rather of all the commotion that ever led us to this point, coupled with all the intention that will guide us well past it. after the holiday, right before the new year, i’m a long exposure of reflection – readying myself to become as absorbent as i possibly can once january arrives. but first, the holiday. and nothing signifies it better than taking down the brussels sprouts.
there is no shortage of inspiration for getting behind these miniature cabbages – especially if you choose to feature them at a holiday table. they can and will shine. i find them receiving a revival, with both copious testimony and tribute to an almost mythically famed delight. this hype is true. sprouts are adhering recently to a more modern approach – a far cry from their old horror-story laced dinner table foundation our parents(‘s parents) offered. and while my heart would like to seek to ignite and lift your own with a bountiful holiday table idea (a recent favorite), we’re going flat out with what feels good right now – grilled cheese. because it’s been cold as hell and this is a really good way to enjoy the fruit of your labor/season – seared and married to cheese. also, this gives last week’s bread major purpose.
happy holiday dear friends, thank you always for following my mind, my eyes, my belly. may your weekend be filled with health and happiness – all notions of love and acceptance – and the innate desire to embrace. see you again before our 16 turns into a 17.
- 2 cups brussels sprouts, shredded
- 1 tbl olive oil
- salt and pepper
- ¾ cup shaved smoked gouda
- 4 thick slices of boule
- 3 tbl butter, divided in half
- shred brussels sprouts either by hand, or carefully with the aid of a mandoline (I used a knife and made short work of it).
- heat olive oil just until smoking in a large cast iron, or shallow heavy-bottomed skillet. add shredded brussels sprouts and cook until browned in spots and sautéed through, about 2 minutes. remove to a small bowl, set aside, and wipe out pan.
- spread slices of bread out. on two halves, add sautéed brussels sprouts and top with cheese (splitting full amounts between both sandwiches). cover with remaining two pieces of bread.
- heat 1½ tbl butter to melt over medium-low heat. add sandwiches to pan and cook until bottoms have evenly browned, maintaining a medium-low heat. if desired, use an additional heavy pan as a weight on top of the sandwiches to expedite the process and ensure even cooking. remove sandwiches to a plate. melt the remaining 1½ tbl butter and add sandwiches back to pan, uncooked side down. heat an additional 5 minutes, or until golden brown.