This recipe is from my friend and neighbour, Jennifer Danter. We share a living room wall and she has a hilarious cat named Garry. For the last 2 years, she and I have been leaving treats outside of each other's doors. I can verify that everything she creates is gold.
She is a recipe developer + food writer, food + drink adventurist, potato chip freak + cheese addict.
If you recognize this recipe, it's because she contributed it to the second volume of our Community Cookbook, and I love her description of it:
"My gran was a Brit and used to call Brussels sprouts "budgie heads". So in a dark youthful way, I immediately loved them from an early age! As I always look to reinvent side dishes, this just seemed both comforting and swoon-worthy. With its lusty creamy texture and smoky cheesy flavour it's kinda like a baller mac 'n cheese of the vegetable world".
1 tbsp butter
3 large garlic cloves, smashed
2 bay leaves
1 shallot, thinly sliced
2 cups 35% whipping cream
2 lbs (1 kg) brussels sprouts
1 red onion, thickly sliced
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste11/2 cups grated cheddar, preferably smoked (or use a blend)
½ cup Parmesan
⅓ cup panko crumbs
Melt butter in a small saucepan set over medium-low heat. Add garlic, bay leaves and shallot; saute until softened (don’t brown), 8-10 min. Pour in cream; increase heat and bring just to a boil. Reduce heat; gently simmer, often stirring, until garlic is meltingly tender, about 8-10 min. Discard bay leaves. Using an immersion or bullet blender, puree until smooth.
Meanwhile, arrange oven rack in centre of oven and preheat to 425F. Trim and discard stem ends and any tatty outer leaves from sprouts. Cut sprouts in half. Par-boil just until tender, 4-5 min. Add onions for the last 1 min of cooking. Drain well; pat dry with a kitchen towel.
Arrange sprouts and onion in a buttered casserole dish (shallow is best). Generously season with salt and pepper. Pour cream over the top. Place dish on a baking sheet; bake for 20 min or until sauce is thick ‘n bubbly and tops of sprouts start to blister.
Combine cheeses with panko; season with pepper; sprinkle over sprouts. Broil until cheese is bubbly and turns golden, about 3-4 min.