First of all, I don’t know if it’s the change in weather, allergies, or just dumb luck, but, currently, Erin and I are both feeling just a bit under the weather. It feels like we’ve got the same thing—lethargy, sniffles, and a head full of bricks—but I can’t be sure. Either way, I’m going to blame her for giving it to me. I suppose these things happen when you share a desk for 40+ hours a week.
Regardless, we’re here for you, and we want you to make tasty food for yourself, and whoever you love.
We were in the kitchen today and Erin decided to make some Brussels sprouts for lunch. She roasted them with olive oil, kept it simple and healthy. I, on the other hand, drowned my Brussels in scalding animal fat and added bacon. I guess that’s what makes this whole Whiskey & Waffles thing work, our complete opposite approach to things.
It took me years and years to enjoy Brussels sprouts, but, recently, I’ve found a few ways that I really like to enjoy them. And that’s good, because they’re really good for you. One of these dishes is a replication of something we both had while in Austin at this year’s Food & Wine Festival and fell in love with. The others are just how we like to enjoy our greens.
We think these dishes are rather tasty, rather simple, and rather easy. We hope you do, too, and we hope you’re feeling better than we are.
As a side note, I made all these to serve one person. So scale up if you need. Or just make two versions and share with your hunny.
I don’t know if this is anywhere close to traditional. Actually, it’s not. But I love Italian food, so I put all my favorite flavors together and voila! Super tasty. This dish is all about balancing salt, acid, and fat. Really, that’s what every good dish comes down to.
8 Brussels sprouts, halved
Olive oil, as needed
2 cloves garlic, whole, peeled, slightly crushed with the end of a knife
½ tsp. Italian seasonings, dried
Salt, as needed
Pepper, as needed
¼ cup red onion, cut into half moons
1 tbsp. butter
1 tsp. balsamic vinegar
Parmesan cheese (the real stuff, on the block, that you shave yourself. Cheese in a can isn’t real food.)
1. In a small pan over medium heat, lay your Brussels cut side down into the oil. If it doesn’t sizzle, it’s not hot enough. Wait for your pan to heat up. Add the garlic and season with salt, pepper, and herbs. Cook, cut side down, for 4-5 minutes or until they begin to caramelize and get a nice dark color on the bottom.
2. Flip your sprouts and add in your onions. Cook for another 2-3 minutes or until your onions become soft.
3. Add the butter to the pan and toss to coat the sprouts and onions. Once the butter has melted, turn them out onto a plate, drizzle with balsamic, and grate cheese until you feel happy about it.
Brussels with Bacon
Of course I love this dish. We both do. We first discovered it in Austin and have been lusting after it ever since.
8 Brussels, cut in half
2 strips of bacon, cooked, crumbled
1 clove garlic, cut into thin strips
2 tbsp. Garlic mayonnaise
A note on the mayo: You can make a garlic aioli if you like. You can mix in garlic powder with your mayo to your heart’s content. You can run mayo and garlic cloves in the food processor with shallots and olive oil. Do whatever you want, just make sure you’ve got a nice, creamy, garlicy sauce to go over top.
1. Deep fry your sprouts for 1 ½-2 minutes, depending on how much color you like on your food. I prefer mine more on the charred side. Deep fry your garlic for 1-1 ½ minutes or until slightly brown and crispy.
2. Toss your sprouts, garlic chips, and bacon with salt, pepper, and chili powder to taste. Serve with garlic mayo…or aioli…or whatever.
See how easy that was?
Honey Baked Brussels
Yeah, I know, vegetables and dessert? I mean, it’s not dessert. But it could be. Stay with me on this recipe. The flavors are really interesting and really make you think about your food. Who says vegetables have to be drenched in fat and salt (besides me) to be good?
8 Brussels sprouts, halved
Nutmeg, fresh, please, just do yourself a favor and get yourself some whole nutmeg and a grater
Cardamom, ground, if you’re feeling exotic, if not, it’s okay, skip it
1 tbsp. Olive oil
2 tbsp. Honey
1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. Okay, nailing this dish is about having a light hand. First, lay out your sprouts, cut side up, on a baking tray. Lightly, and I mean lightly, drizzle with olive oil. They don’t need to be coated. Next, sprinkle just a TINY bit of salt over them and a TINY bit of pepper. Next, grate your fresh nutmeg over in a pretty good dusting (I know, my measurements are super precise. But you’ll be okay.) Last, sprinkle on the cardamom like it’s almost not even there.
3. Bake for 10 minutes, then remove and drizzle with honey. Again, not to drown your sprouts, just so they know there’s some honey going on and you love them. Bake for an additional 5-7 minutes.
4. Just before serving your spouts, throw just a teeeeeny tiny bit of cayenne on them. Don’t go bananas or anything trying to show people how much you love spicy food. This isn’t about the dish being spicy, it’s about balance, it’s about using just a hint to make things interesting.