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The key to cooking Brussels sprouts is not overcooking them. The leaves cook faster than the core. Cut an x in the bottom of the stem for even cooking when cooking the sprouts whole.
The key to cooking Brussels sprouts is not overcooking them. The leaves cook faster than the core. Cut an X in the bottom of the stem for even cooking when cooking the sprouts whole. As a rule, when Brussels sprouts have lost their bright green color, they are overcooked and have lost a considerable amount of nutritional value as well. Depending on size, cooking time should not exceed 7 to 10 minutes, whether you are steaming, braising or boiling. Select sprouts of even size for uniform cooking. Large sprouts should be cut in half.
Over high heat, bring four liters of water and 1 tablespoon of sea salt to a rolling boil in a blanching pot. Blanch one pound of Brussels sprouts at a time. Refresh in ice cold water to keep them bright green. Start counting blanching time as soon as the water comes to a boil. Blanch small heads for 3 minutes, medium heads for 4 minutes and large heads for 5 minutes.
To cool, plunge the blanching basket of Brussels sprouts into an ice water bath. Use one pound of ice per pound of vegetables in one gallon of water. Cooling should take the same amount of time as blanching, depending on the size of the heads. Drain, pack into zip-closure bags or freezer containers, label and date. Freeze for up to one year at 0°F or below.
Hints and tips: The best home preservation method for Brussels sprouts is freezing. As with any vegetable, Brussels sprouts will need to be blanched prior to freezing. Select firm, young, tender heads. Examine heads carefully to make sure they are free from insects. Trim, removing coarse outer leaves. Wash thoroughly. Sort into small, medium and large sizes.