My favorite side dish: Brussel Sprouts.

Since the Thanksgiving/Christmas holidays are filled with hot chocolate, sugar cookies and my daughter’s famous chocolate pie, January is the month of “oh my gosh my pants are to tight, I need to eat only veggies for a while!”  My go to side dish right now is brussel sprouts. I have been known to eat them for all three meals, they’re just that good.  Here is a quick peak at the finished product.

Brussel Sprouts are one of my favorite things to fix right now.
Brussel Sprouts are one of my favorite things to fix right now.

Here is how you tackle this amazing dish:

One bag of brussel sprouts, one small bag of fingerling potatoes, one small bag of frozen pearl onions, 2 cups of butternut squash, 4-6 strips of bacon (since my daughter doesn’t eat bacon, I take this out when she is home and use the olive oil instead) olive oil, 2 Tbsp of minced garlic, a healthy bunch of fresh thyme, chicken or veggie stock and balsamic vinegar.

In a family size skillet on medium heat, put your bacon (if you are not using bacon, start with olive oil) and 3-4 whole stocks of thyme. (you can add more or none if you want) As the bacon cooks, the thyme will infuse the bacon fat with additional flavor. Remove the bacon to cool, but leave the thyme stocks in the pan with whatever fat is left in the pan. (if you think there is to much, drain a little off) Stir fry your veggies for about 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally as you go. (You don’t need to add butternut squash, I usually throw in whatever veggies I have on hand and on this particular night I had some leftover butternut squash) When the veggies have browned add your garlic and toss around until you smell the perfume of the garlic, then add a cup/cup and a half of the stock.(the stock should not completely cover the veggies, just about half way) Stir to deglaze the bottom of the pan, then turn down the heat a little and cover so the veggies will steam as they cook. Stir every once in a while, that way you will notice if you need to add a little more stock.  When the veggies are tender, add a couple of tablespoons of balsamic vinegar, then put the lid back on and let the liquid reduce down.  The vinegar will reduce down to almost a syrup in the bottom of the dish. Before you serve, make sure to fish out the stocks of thyme, crumble the bacon over the top and toss to combine. You can add salt at this point if the dish needs it.

You can serve this amazing side dish with steak, chicken or pork.  I have served it under a piece of sea bass and it was amazing. Yummo, eating healthy isn’t so bad after all. What is your go to side dish?

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