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David Chang's infamous Brussels sprouts with kimchi purée and bacon recipe

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The popularity of David Chang's Brussels sprout side dish threatened to spiral out of control when it debuted at Noodle Bar in East Village. In an interview with Adam Rapoport, who was at GQ at the time, Chang said, "It was ridiculous. I would've had to dedicate one of my cooks to doing nothing but cooking sprouts all night." So, what did he do? He took it off the menu.

Nuts, right? Well, if you missed out, here's your chance to try it. This recipe, which he developed for All-Clad, is probably as close as you'll ever get to tasting the dish at home.

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For the kimchi:

  • 1 small to medium head Napa cabbage
  • 2 T kosher or coarse sea salt
  • ½ c + 2 T sugar
  • 20 cloves garlic, minced
  • 20 slices ginger, minced
  • ¼ c gochugaru (Korean chili powder)
  • ¼ c fish sauce
  • ¼ c usukuchi (light soy sauce)
  • 2 t jarred salted shrimp
  • ½ c 1-inch-long pieces scallions, green and white parts
  • ½ c julienned carrots

For the Brussels sprouts:

  • 1 lb Brussels sprouts
  • ¼ lb smoky bacon, preferably Benton's, cut into 1- to 1 ½-in long batons
  • 2 T unsalted butter
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 c Napa cabbage kimchi, puréed
  • 1 c julienned carrots, for garnish


For the kimchi:

1. Remove and discard the discolored or loose outer leaves from the cabbage. Cut lengthwise in half, then cut the halves crosswise into 1-inch-wide pieces.

2. In a bowl, toss the cabbage with the salt and 2 T sugar in a bowl. Refrigerate overnight.

3. The next day, in a large bowl, combine the garlic, ginger, gochugaru, fish sauce, soy sauce, shrimp, and ½ c sugar. If it is very thick, add water 1/3 c at a time until the brine is just thicker than a creamy salad dressing but no longer a sludge.

4. Stir in the scallions and carrots.

5. Drain the cabbage, and add it to the brine. Cover, and refrigerate. (Though the kimchi will be tasty in 24 hours, it will be better in a week and at its prime in 2 weeks. It will still be good for another couple weeks after that, though it will grow incrementally stronger and funkier.)

For the Brussels sprouts:

1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.

2. Remove and discard the loose outer leaves from the sprouts, and cut the sprouts in half through the core.

3. Line a plate with paper towels. Put the bacon in a 12-inch fry pan, and cook over medium heat, turning occasionally, until just about crisp, about 5 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to the plate, and reserve.

4. Drain off most of the fat from the pan, and add the sprouts, cut side down, to the same pan. Increase the heat to medium-high, and sear until the sprouts begin to sizzle.

5. Transfer to the oven, and roast until the sprouts are deeply browned, about 8 minutes, then shake the pan to redistribute them. Remove the pan from the oven when the sprouts are bright green and fairly tender (taste one to check), about 10-15 more minutes.

6. Return the pan to the stovetop over medium heat, and stir in the bacon and butter. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Toss the sprouts to coat them.

7. Divide the kimchi among 4 shallow bowls. Use the back of a spoon to spread the kimchi out so it covers the bottom of the bowls. Divide the sprouts among the bowls, arranging them in a tidy pile on top of the kimchi. Garnish each with a pile of carrot julienne and serve.

Serves: 4

Makes: 1-1 ½ qts kimchi



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