Sometimes when I make a lot of desserts, I almost feel like I'm cheating. After all, when you're cooking with large quantities of butter and sugar, it's pretty hard to go wrong. And even if things don't go as planned, many a messed-up dessert can still be redeemed by dipping it in chocolate or covering it in whipped cream.

    Much though I love baking (and eating) sweets, I also like a good challenge. I think one way to really improve as a cook is to take a food you absolutely detest and find a way to cook it so that you will want to eat it. Not everybody hates brussels sprouts, but most people do. And I am one of them. So my latest "thing" is brussels sprouts. I've decided (and I'm very determined) that I am going to come up with a brussels sprouts recipe that is not only acceptable, but delectable.

    It was thus that I found myself telling my incredulous mother over the phone that I had actually bought brussels sprouts at the store. And was planning to eat them. My plan, over the course of the next week or so, is to try cooking brussels sprouts in three different ways, then decide which I liked best and post it as "The Way With Brussels Sprouts".

    So is this THE way with brussels sprouts? Well, I still need to try cooking up 2 more recipes before I decide, but this is definitely A way with brussels sprouts. I ate them all, without any gagging or whining or trying to feed them to the dog (not that we have a dog to feed them to, or anything). In my book, that's a pretty good start.

* Serves 1
2 small brussels sprouts, cut into 4 thin slices each
2 red radishes, also cut into 4 thin slices each
1 tsp white wine vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp olive oil
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
grated parmesan cheese and whole, unsalted almonds to sprinkle on top

    Put the sliced brussels sprouts and radishes into a small airtight plastic container with the vinegar and salt. Stir so that all the pieces of vegetable are coated in salt and vinegar. Seal the container and put it in the fridge for an hour.

    After an hour, remove the container from the refrigerater. Heat the olive oil in a small nonstick skillet until it spreads to coat the pan, or a small piece of brussel sprout sizzles on contact. Pour the vegetables into the skillet and saute them for about 1 minute, then turn them and saute them for one more minute on the other side. You barely want to cook them-if the sprouts begin to turn yellowish brown, remove them from the pan. Serve immediately with pepper, pamesan cheese, and almonds sprinkled on top.