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Crispy Brussels Sprouts with Chile Caramel

Crispy Brussels Sprouts with Chile Caramel

Smaller Brussels can cook in half the time; rely on the visuals, not your timer, to know when they’re done.


Servings: 4

1 tablespoon vegetable oil, plus more for frying (about 8 cups)

1 small shallot, coarsely chopped

6 garlic cloves, peeled

1 red or green Thai chile, halved

1 lemongrass stalk, tough outer layers removed, cut into 1-inch pieces

1 1-inch piece ginger, peeled, thinly sliced into rounds

½ cup fish sauce (such as nam pla or nuoc nam)

½ cup sugar

1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed, quartered

Lemon wedges (for serving)

Special Equipment

A deep-fry thermometer


Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a medium skillet over medium-high. Add shallot, garlic, chile, lemongrass, and ginger and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, 6–8 minutes. Stir in fish sauce, scraping up any brown bits. Stir in sugar and ½ cup water and bring to a boil; cook, stirring occasionally, until reduced by half, 12–15 minutes. Strain sauce into a medium bowl; discard solids. Let cool.?

Pour oil into a large heavy pot to come 3" up sides. Fit pot with thermometer and heat oil over medium-high until thermometer registers 350°. Working in batches, fry Brussels sprouts until brown and crisp, about 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels to drain. ?

Arrange Brussels sprouts on a platter, drizzle with ¼ cup sauce, and toss to coat, adding more sauce if needed. Serve with lemon wedges for squeezing over.