I remember my Mama, May Fair steaming up these little green cabbages with a little butter added when I was young and “kind of” liking them.  Keep in mind, there isn’t a whole lot I didn’t like as a child.  But, as we all know our palette does change with time and it helps when we flavor “different” foods to make them a bit more appealing.

Case in point…my Buttery Capered Brussels Sprouts!

I think you end up with more evenly cooked brussels sprouts when you take the time to destem, cut in half, parboil them in salted water and cool a bit.  At this point you could just drizzle some really nice olive oil on them, salt and pepper and call it a day.  But to really take it to the next level here’s what I do!

Cooled parboiled brussels sprouts...ready for sauteing!

Parboiling…what is that?  Partially cooking something in salted boiling water.  I use my 8 quart soup/greens pot to parboil.  Fill it 2/3’s full with water, bring to a rapid boil, add in 1 tablespoon sea salt.  Add in all the destemmed, halved brussels sprouts.  Bring to a boil.  after about 5-7 minutes of boiling check to see that you can just pierce a sprout with your fork.  Could take less or more time.  Keep in mind that you will be giving the brussels sprouts a second cooking so you want them just tender.  And, this step is always great to do in advance of the day that you need them so they’re in the fridge and ready to go.  Be sure to cool them completely before covering and storing in the fridge.

Love my using my “spider” (see above) when I’m parboiling or blanching foods.  Just lift the foods out to cool on a pan instead of straining into a big ol’ colander…saves on one thing to clean.  You can find a spider (mostly used for frying and wok cooking) at a nice cookery shop or your local asian market.  A great and fun gift to give as well!

Even if you just like brussels sprouts a little bit then try this recipe and give them another chance because I’ve seen many a soul fall in love with them.  So, let me know how you’re cooking your brussels sprouts!

Buttery Capered Brussels Sprouts

Serves 6


2 one pound bags fresh  brussels sprouts (destemmed, halved & parboiled)
*should yield about 8 cups after parboiled
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup capers, lightly rinsed
1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
Sea salt to taste
1/8-1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper


  • In a large saute pan over medium-high heat melt and cook the butter until it’s caramel color about 4-5 minutes.  Swirling the pan to keep the butter from burning.  You just want to smell that nuttiness from the butter as it starts to turn brown.
  • Add in the parboiled brussels sprouts and saute for 3-5 minutes
  • Add in the capers and pepper and saute another few minutes
  • Place them on your serving dish and toss in the cheese until it’s well mixed in and taste to see if you need to add any more sea salt.
  • This veggie dish is a perfect side to any meat, poulty or fish you’re serving!