This is my favorite kind of dishthe kind that feels indulgent while still allowing you to think you’re being healthy. And, it really is mostly healthy.
Sure, there’s the bacon. But it’s minimal compared to the vegetables, there for flavor more than anything else. And what flavor it impartsit’s the perfect foil for the vegetables and seasoning. The saltiness nicely offsetting the tartness of the granny smith apples and perfectly balancing the acidic punch of the vinegar.
Then, there are the Brussels sprouts, filled with fiber and vitamin rich, detested by children everywhere.
My mother was so convinced that my sister and I would hate them that she refused to serve them in our house while we were going up. I’m almost entirely convinced that’s the only reason I like them so much now.
This is also the kind of dish that comes together quickly, making it the perfect candidate for a quick weeknight dinner. A little bit of chopping, a quick stir and dinner is on the table.
Make it tonight.
Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Apples
A note about the oil before you get cooking: I realize it seems a bit excessive what with the bacon fat. You can certainly leave it out, but in my experience, the vegetables stick to the pan without it and burn instead of brown. So, do so at your own risk. (Upon rereading that, I realize that it sounds rather ominous. Forgive me, but I take my vegetables very seriously, apparently.)
1.5 cups brussels sprouts, quartered
4 bacon strips, diced
1 large granny smith apple, peeled and diced
1/2 large or 1 small onion onion, cut into slivers
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp thyme
2 TBS cider vinegar
1 TBS olive oil
In a large pan, heat bacon, rendering the fat, about 5 minutes.
Add olive oil to the pan, and once it has heated, add the onions, garlic and thyme, and saute until the onions are translucent. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Add the brussels sprouts without stirring, another 5-7 minutes until they have caramelized, appropriately another 5-7 minutes.
Pour in the cider vinegar to deglaze the pan, and stir to get up all of the brown bits.
Add the apples, stirring until they’ve heated.
Cover the pan for another 5 minutes to allow the flavors to meld. Finish off with more salt and pepper, as needed.
Serves 4 as a side dish and 2 as a main dish.