Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon & Aged Cheddar | Whole Green Love

23 Jan

Winter foods tend to be earthy, hearty, and hard to pass up this time of year. There is something to be said about keeping fresh, whole foods very simple during the preparation process. When you are working with seasonal ingredients, it doesn’t take too much food “jazzing” to make the flavors pop. Simple and fresh foods tend to hold their own with minimal preparation.

This Brussels sprout recipe has been a favorite winter recipe in our house. We vary up a few of the ingredients depending on what we have on hand, but this is the gist of it.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon & Aged Cheddar

25-30 Brussels sprouts

1 ½ inches of cleaned leek, diced into small pieces

1 large clove of garlic, diced into small pieces

3 Tbsp butter

4-5 pieces of bacon

¼ cup crumbled aged white cheddar cheese (or a similar sharp cheese)

1 ½ Tbsp reserved bacon grease

Sea salt and cracked pepper, to taste

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Soak the Brussels sprouts in water for a few minutes to wash off any dirt. While they are soaking, take a cast iron skillet or other oven safe pan and start to crisp up the bacon. Once the bacon is done, set it on a towel lined plate to cool.

Trim the brown ends of the Brussels sprouts and cut them in half. Next, spoon out the bacon grease from the pan you cooked your bacon in. Leave  1 tablespoon of bacon grease in your pan to sear your Brussels sprouts. Be sure to save a ½ tablespoon of the bacon grease for the garlic and leek mixture (more on that in a minute!).

Melt 2 tablespoons of butter into your reserved bacon grease pan. Toss your lovely Brussels sprouts into your pan to soak up  the butter and bacon flavors, about 1 minute. Season the dish with salt and pepper and place the uncovered, oven-safe dish into the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes or until your Brussels sprouts are golden, but not overcooked. Stir occasionally while they bake.

While the Brussels sprouts are roasting to perfection, add the last tablespoon of butter and ½ tablespoon of bacon grease to a small saucepan. Stir in the diced leek and garlic and simmer on low for about 10 minutes or until the leeks and garlic are soft and melded together.

When your Brussels sprouts have golden edges, remove them from the oven. Transfer to a serving dish and top with crumbled bacon and sharp cheddar cheese.  This dish makes a great side dish, but shines as a main dish as well.

Not only do these beautiful cruciferous vegetables taste fabulous, but they contain a significant amount of isothiocyanates and sulforaphane. According to the American Institute of Cancer Research, these compounds are well known protectors against carcinogenesis. All the more reason to eat up!

We hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we have!

This recipe was shared on Fresh Bites Friday and Foodie Friday.

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