Brussels Sprouts with Caraway and Lemon Zest


The citrus fragrance of grated lemon zest freshens Brussels sprouts, but caraway is the real surprise here. The sprouts love its anise-like scent, as do other cabbage relatives. If you have a mortar, pound the caraway slightly to release more of its perfume.

Every towering stalk of Brussels sprouts holds both large and small sprouts—the large ones near the top, the smaller ones toward the base. From Eating Local by Janet Fletcher (Andrews McMeel).

  • 1 pound small Brussels sprouts
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, or more if desired
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon caraway seed
  • Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

To trim the Brussels sprouts, peel off any loose or discolored outer leaves and slice across the base to remove any dried or browned flesh. Cut a slit in the base so the sprout cooks more quickly.

Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the Brussels sprouts and cook until they are tender when pierced, 8 to 10 minutes. (Remove one and cut in half to be sure.) Drain in a sieve or colander, then return to the cooking pot. Place the pot over moderate heat and shake until the sprouts are completely dry.

Add the butter, lemon zest, and caraway. Season highly with salt—Brussels sprouts need a lot—and pepper. Stir until the butter melts, then serve immediately.

Serves 4