Brussels sprouts are the vegetable everyone likes to rehabilitate. Once upon a time, you loathed them, you say -- but this recipe should convert even the most recalcitrant sprout-hater!
I too had my conversion experience, once upon a time. There was nothing about the recipe that did it; I'd tried any number of much more luxurious preparations earlier and been unable to appreciate them. When I finally changed my mind, it was over a little pile that had been only steamed and buttered.
Since then, of course, I've happily embraced all these other preparations people like so much. I'm still very fond of this vinegary recipe, though I now cook it more quickly (just five minutes in the first stage, and add a little less water, so that the liquid takes less time to reduce).
Cream, cheese, nuts, and butter are all natural complements to brussels sprouts, acting as they do to mellow the bitter flavor. This is a fine idea, but I feel that there can, in fact, be too much of a good thing, and like some sort of acidic zing! to round things out. These braised sprouts with lemon juice and sour cream are mild without being claggy.
CREAMY, LEMONY BRUSSELS SPROUTS
About a pound of brussels sprouts
2 T. olive oil
1/4 t. sea salt, plus more to taste at the end if needed
Juice of one lemon, or more, especially if that lemon isn't terribly juicy.
Water if needed
2 T. sour cream
Note: You must use real sour cream. Anything lighter will separate from the heat and the lemon. No yogurt.
Trim and halve your sprouts, which should be fresh and firm. Cut into quarters if they're specially large ones. Saute the sprouts in the olive oil over medium-high heat until they get toasty and golden. Sprinkle with salt.
Add the lemon juice and bring to a boil, then lower the heat as far as it will go. Cover and braise until tender enough to pierce easily with a sharp knife. Add water in small splashes as needed. Remove the lid and stir in the sour cream. Taste for seasoning and adjust if necessary. Let simmer for a moment, uncovered, to meld the ingredients, and serve.
Update: Q points out in the comments that "bring to a boil" is a little misleading when you're talking about a few tablespoons of liquid at the most. Your pan will already be hot, so the juice should boil up immediately. Then bang the lid on and lower the heat right away.