Day 4 – Countdown to Christmas 2013 Roasted Maple Brussels Sprouts with Cranberries and Pecans

Christmas is one of those holidays where I honestly never know what to make.  Do I go with another turkey?  I’m thinking no since we just had Thanksgiving a few weeks ago.  Now I could go with ham however ham is traditionally an Easter thing here. Sure I could do a pork roast but again, that’s a New Year’s Eve/Day meal.  So I’m at a loss right now and still undecided.  Yeah I know, “Nothing like waiting until the last minute babe!” Since it’s just Mr. Fantabulous and I maybe I’ll make lobster and lasagna – two of his favorites. *shrugs*  However one thing I know I’ll be making is this side dish.  I seriously have a true love with Brussels Sprouts now.  The maple-y goodness that is roasted into these is amazing.  Adding in the tartness of the cranberries and the crunchiness of the pecans… YUM!

Roasted Brussels Sprouts Cranberries Pecans

I first made this recipe for Thanksgiving and literally could have just eaten this instead of anything else.  It was sweet and tart, crunchy and savory. Plus it was delicious!  This dish, since I made a full batch, lasted me a week and I swear each day I ate it it got better and better.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts Cranberries Pecans1

This is a fairly simple dish to make and if you wanted to add some oomph to it you could most certainly add in some crispy bacon (cause bacon makes EVERYTHING better) or some crisped prosciutto. C’mon it’s me, I have to throw in the bacon option for you guys.  Now in the original dish, I didn’t add bacon BUT in day 3 I did and it ROCKED!!!  Added a great saltiness to the dish and well that amazing bacon flavor without being overpowering.

I think when I make this for Christmas I will go with some crispy prosciutto for sure in the dish.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts Cranberries Pecans2

So whether you’re making ham, turkey, standing rib roast…

Ohhhhhhhhh wait, that sounds awesome actually!  Hmmm rib roast that’s a possibility now.

Anyway, whatever you serve for dinner, this is a great side dish!

Roasted Brussels Sprouts Cranberries Pecans3

Day 4 - Countdown to Christmas 2013 Roasted Maple Brussels Sprouts with Cranberries and Pecans
 
Author: 
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Ingredients
  • 1 pound Brussels sprouts, ends trimmed
  • 2 Tbl olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp fresh black pepper
  • 3/4 cup fresh whole cranberries
  • 1 cup pecan halves, toasted
  • 1 1/2 Tbl real maple syrup
  • 1 Tbl balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 8 slices of crispy bacon or prosciutto *optional
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400F with a rack in the middle.
  2. Place the Brussels sprouts on a rimmed metal sheet pan.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, maple syrup, balsamic vinegar and vanilla.
  4. Whisk to combine and pour over the sprouts mixture.
  5. Gently toss the Brussels sprouts to coat evenly.
  6. Roast for 30-35 minutes or just until they start to turn golden brown.
  7. Remove the pan from the oven and add on the pecans and gently stir.
  8. Roast for 5 minutes, remove the pan from the oven and add the cranberries.
  9. Return the pan to the oven and continue to roast for 7-10 additional minutes. The Brussels sprouts should be tender and almost soft – pierced easily with a knife
  10. Remove from the oven and place the sprouts mixture into a serving bowl.
  11. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and bacon/prosciutto.

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