The Side Dish: Barcelona Wine Bar's Crispy Brussels Sprouts

One of Barcelona's most popular tapas plates is also one of its simplest. The sprouts are halved and deep-fried for just a few minutes to get a perfect crunchy exterior, then seasoned with salt and paprika and topped with quick-pickled onions. Barcelona uses imported Spanish pimentón to enhance its sprouts, but Eric Stagl, executive chef at the West Hartford location, says that any smoked paprika will work.


>>1 red onion, julienned

>>2 cups red wine vinegar

>>1/2 cup sugar

>>1/2 cup kosher salt

Bring red wine vinegar, sugar and salt to a boil; pour over julienned red onions and cover. Let onions sit in the mixture for at least 30 minutes to pickle. (This can also be done the day before, Stagl says.)


>>2-1/2 pounds of Brussels sprouts, halved (or quartered if they're large)

>>3 quarts soybean oil

>>2 tbsp kosher salt

>>1 tsp pimentón or smoked paprika

Heat oil to 350 degrees in a pot that holds at least 6 quarts. (Check using a high-temperature thermometer.) Slowly and carefully put Brussels sprouts into hot oil. Cook until sprouts are golden brown. Remove from oil with a spider strainer and lay on paper towels. Mix kosher salt and paprika together and season sprouts, then top with pickled red onion.

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