Celery, cooked until tender and then puréed, creates an elegant sauce for Brussels sprouts.
1 pound Brussels sprouts
8 ribs celery, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 cup medium or whipping cream
Salt and freshly ground white pepper
Freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 cup coarsely chopped pecans
1. Generously butter a shallow baking dish. Drop the Brussels sprouts into a large pot of boiling, salted water and cook, uncovered, for 12 minutes or until crisp-tender. Drain in a colander set under cold running water. Shake to remove as much water as possible and transfer to the prepared baking dish.
2. Place the celery in a wide saucepan and add enough water to cover by 1 inch. Cover the pan and place over medium heat. Cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until the celery is tender. Transfer to the container of a blender or processor and whirl until smooth. Return to the saucepan and cook, uncovered, until reduced by half.
3. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small saucepan. Sprinkle on the flour and stir over medium heat until the mixture foams. Whisk in the cream and continue stirring over medium heat until bubbly and slightly thickened. Whisk in the reduced celery broth. Season with salt and pepper and stir in the nutmeg.
4. Preheat the oven to 350°. Pour the celery sauce over the Brussels sprouts and toss to coat. Scatter the pecans over the top and bake for 20 minutes or until heated through.