Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Skillet Brussels Sprouts with Crispy Lardons

A blank canvas of Brussels sprouts ... waiting for the bacon
 For someone who didn't eat any meat (except for the occasional fish) for over 10 years, I certainly seem to be making up for lost time, don't I? Take this dish - I could have gone on making Brussels sprouts one of the two delicious ways I always do: either roasted in the oven with olive oil, balsamic, salt and pepper, or sauteed in butter with some fresh lime juice. Brother-in-law Trix made them, to great acclaim,  the latter way at Thanksgiving a few years ago.

But I had to go and get all happy with some slab bacon. And bust out the cast iron skillet. And, for good measure, go a little crazy with the white truffle oil. And so, for now, this is my very favorite way to eat my very favorite vegetable:

First, cut up some slab bacon into small cubes - or lardons if you want to be fancy. (Note: This meat comes from my beloved Truck Patch Farms, where the piggies roam free. Bryan Voltaggio sources his pork products, among other things, from this small family farm):
Behold my wondrous slicing knife! 
Next, fry those babies up in a cast iron skillet until they're nice and crispy and the fat has rendered. You'll cook your Brussels sprouts in the bacon grease:
Remove the lardons and drain on paper towels. Toss in about a pound of roughly-chopped Brussels sprouts and saute on medium high heat until they start to turn brown and crispy. Give a good squeeze of lemon juice to deglaze the skillet,  pop the bacon cubes back in, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove to a bowl and (generously) drizzle on some white truffle oil. You can sprinkle the whole thing with Parmesan if you like - I meant to, but I totally forgot, and I didn't miss it. This simple process transforms this ...
... into this:
And then you shovel it all into your face.  And still get to  feel sort of virtuous, because despite the presence of the bacon fat this is, after all, a green vegetable. Enjoy!





23 comments:

  1. Trix...this is a very good recipe....have a nice day, hugs, Flavia

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  2. I can't believe people pass up brussels sprouts - they are so yummy! Especially when you have a recipe such as the one you posted...delicious!

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  3. You are awesome! I adore brussels sprouts, too, and this is a superb idea -- one, that I'm definitely going to use. Reminds me of the old 'killed' lettuce salads we used to make. And, of course, bacon or butter transforms every dish! Thanks for sharing.

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  4. Is that a culinary school knife? It looks like our schools sourced their knife kits from the same source! The slicer is my favourite of them all -- I use it to slice a lot of bacon for lardons, which I'll be pairing with brussel sprouts next -- this dish looks great! theresa

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  5. this dish sounds so good. thank you for sharing it. this is my kinda brussels sprout dish.

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  6. I'm not fuge fun of brussels sprouts but this dish looks great. Bacon and brussels sprouts are great combination I think.

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  7. Very nicely done... love the bacon fat a little can't hurt you once in a while and its soooooo good! This looks great!

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  8. I hope all us live a long life, if we don't, just let us enjoy bacon.... so glad you 're-found' this savory meat, it makes everything taste better - love the pic as you slice the bacon, looks like your hands are not yet sure.... very nice looking sprouts with the lemon, have never used truffle oil...

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  9. Great recipe, can't wait to make it. What could be better. Brussel sprouts which I love + a wee bit of bacon. Thanks.

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  10. Not a fan of brussels sprouts...but just maybe the lardons may make them OK, just OK to eat ;-)

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  11. That is what I do when I have brussel sprouts... also loads of butter and cheese.

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  12. Trixie Girl! You and your brussel sprouts! Though the dish DOES look good, I think I would have to still pass on this (of course sans bacon-ew!), but I did buy a bag of the frozen cabbage heads thanks to you and am awaiting a striking hunger to descend before ripping the bag open. So far, I got nothin'--but bravo to you!

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  13. mmm, bacon makes everything better, but i actually like brussel sprouts anyway. delicious recipe!

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  14. Ooh, as someone who has also not eaten that much meat in the last ten years, I can understand why you like your sprouts this way, Trix! They sound delicious, and I'm actually really impressed with how these look so properly cooked without oven roasting or boiling. Very nice...:-)

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  15. Oh yeah - now this is the way to do Brussels Sprouts. You certainly are making up for lost time well. I like your style!

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  16. An excellent way to prepare Brussels sprouts, loving those crispy bacon lardons!

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  17. Brussels Sprouts are my favorite. Yours look great!

    I have a flatbread to be posted tomorrow using Brussels Sprouts :)

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  18. What a lovely recipe. Your photos are also wonderful. I hope you have a great day. Blessings...Mary

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  19. Hi Trix :) I have to admit I am not the biggest fan of brussel sprouts (too often served over cooked IMHO) but, when you pull out the lardon big guns, I am just a goner LOL

    This is beautiful!! And btw - I LOVE your new header. Very chic!

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  20. I am not obsessive about bacon like some people I know but this is one dish where bacon is a necessity. Can't find a better companion to brussel sprouts~

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  21. Your favorite chef instructorJanuary 13, 2011 at 10:32 PM

    I love brussel spouts, especially with bacon. The truffle oil sounds delicious. I would put a few more yummies in there like diced granny smith apples, calvados, pecans,shallots and of course: butter.

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  22. I am a HUGE brussels sprouts fan. This recipe looks great and I am most certainly going to try it. I make a similar recipe where I slice the brussels thinly, saute them in a little bacon fat to where they still have a little crunch and then add dried cranberries and sometimes a toasted nut of choice.

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