LIMA — The lunch special was mid-assembly, breakfast prep was being done, veggies were being chopped for later use, and Jesse Samsal was in the middle of it, grabbing ingredients and throwing today’s recipe together in a flash. The lunch rush was nearly over, and the focus had turned to cleaning up and getting ready for future meals.
Samsal shouted to those working in the kitchen at the Eagles on Robb Avenue: Has anyone tried Brussels sprouts? Most had not.
He shook his head in amazement, and declared that they were going to try them that day. The refreshing thing is that Samsal didn’t judge. He just wanted to share the good thing he knew about.
Samsal, who goes by Chef Jesse, explained today’s recipe is requested over and over again by family members for holidays.
“They make me bring it, which is weird because nobody likes Brussels sprouts except when we make them,” he said.
This recipe came from a friend in 2006, and he’s been making it ever since.
“I don’t think I changed it at all,” he said.
Brussels sprouts are a good source of vitamins C and K, but they have to be prepared well for people to eat them.
Samsal remembers as a child sneaking into an uncle’s garden to munch on veggies.
“He hated me. I was worse than a rabbit,” he said, laughing. “I learned my lesson, though. I ate a habanero.”
He tried Brussels sprouts in that garden for the first time.
“I had them, and they were horrible,” he said.
But Samsal tried them, crediting that garden with piquing his interest in food, and he continues to experiment.
“I think the more people were grossed out (by something), the more I wanted to try it,” he said.
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