Saturday, November 10, 2012

Sweet and Salty Brussels Sprouts

I probably wouldn’t have been a food blogger if not for DFJ. Food is something that I have always loved and taken hands-on interest over the past four years. Each time I made something, notes were meticulously taken on what ingredients were used, added, or substituted, how the food tasted, and ideas on how to make it better next time. The only thing missing then was sharing the recipes online for everyone.

After I met DFJ, my interest in cooking skyrocketed and since then, I have been cooking with fervor. Our first date was dinner at his house and the many other dates that followed after that was cooking together at his house or an occasional invite to my house for dinner. It feels so good to have someone to cook for… it is my way of saying, I care for you and love you oh so very darn much! After he gave me an iPad, I discovered food blogs and was inspired to start my own. It is one of the best things I have ever done… I love the feeling of excitement I get when something I make in my own kitchen turns out so good that it just has to be shared with the rest of the world.  

Right now, I am sitting at home in the semi-darkness before 5 o’clock on a Saturday afternoon, sipping wine while blogging, standing up to do some forgotten chore when I feel like stretching, and just contemplating. DFJ is away on the other side of the country for a job interview and it feels so lonely here. I have already cleaned the kitchen, finished reading a book, worked out for 3 hours both at home and at the gym with my friend, Anna, napped twice, declined an invitation to a hockey game, but still I’m lonely. What else is the best thing to do to while away my time??? Uh, blogging! Thank you my food blog for keeping me company on this cold night!      

On the last day of the Farmers Market in town, I dragged DFJ out of the house. We scoured for different squashes, apples, potatoes, the last of good bell peppers, and scored this Brussels sprouts stalk.

I was inspired by Jenna Weber’s recipe for Caramelized Brussels Sprouts and decided to create something similar. Jenna’s blog, Eat, Live, Run, is one of the first blogs I stumbled upon a year ago and to this day, remains my favorite.

There’s nothing fancy schmancy about this recipe… but it is so delicious in a very down-to-earth kind of way. All you need are a few basic ingredients tossed together in a pan and voila, an awesome Brussels sprouts dish!

If you’re not a big fan of Brussels sprouts, you might change your mind after eating this. Really. It is garlicky, crunchy, and flavorfully sweet. Although I like the taste of Brussels sprouts, I can understand what it is about them that makes some people gag. The soy sauce and honey mix in this dish will do the trick, it accentuates the sprouts nicely and leaves you with a more subtle taste without completely masking its naturally bitter flavor.

The nicely toasted Brussels sprouts with salted candy coating makes for a lovely side dish!

Sweet and Salty Brussels Sprouts

1 tbsp honey
1 tsp soy sauce
2 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 shallot, sliced
5 oz Brussels sprouts, sliced
1/8 tsp salt
pepper, freshly ground

In a small bowl, stir together the honey and soy sauce. Set aside.

Heat olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. When the oil is hot, but not smoking, sauté the garlic until it turns golden brown. Add the shallot slices and sauté until nicely browned and crisp, about 4 minutes. Add the Brussels sprouts and cook until glistening and slightly wilted, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and stir quickly. Pour in the honey and soy sauce mixture. Stir to make sure everything is well combined and let cook for 3-4 more minutes.

Serve right away.

This dish goes really well with meat and rice!

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