How to Cook Brussel Sprout Greens

Brussels sprouts on stalk

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Similar to kale or collard greens, Brussels sprouts greens boast a milder flavor and deep green color that makes them both delicious and attractive on the plate. Because they take a back seat to the vegetable they protect, foodies in the know can often find Brussels sprouts greens for bargain prices at farmer's markets during the fall and winter. Sold either attached to the stalk or own their own in bunches, prepare the greens as you would collards or kale. You'll find that because of their tender texture, however, Brussels sprouts greens cook up in a fraction of the time of more common greens.

Wash the greens under cold, running water, taking special care to dislodge any dirt that might be stuck to the leaves.

Slice or tear the thick middle stem away from the tender leaves. Discard the stem. Fold the leaves in half lengthwise and slice them into thick strips, about 3/4 inch to 1 inch wide.

Heat 1 or 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add minced garlic, diced onions or finely chopped shallots or ginger, if wish. Saute until browned, about 1 minute. Diced ham and crumbled, cooked bacon also make excellent additions. For a spicy kick, sprinkle in a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes.

Add the Brussels sprouts leaves to the pan and cover. Allow the sprouts to steam, stirring every 2 minutes or so, until they are tender and cooked through, about 8 to 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste before serving.