Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Caramelized Brussel Sprouts with Bacon

I promise you these are amazing! Even if you despise Brussels sprouts like my husband and I do give them a try and see.

1 lb fresh Brussels sprouts
1/2 bacon diced
1/2 tsp salt
pepper to taste

Trim the stem end off and remove the outer layer of leaves each Brussels sprout. Rise then pat dry place Brussels sprouts on cutting board and cut each in half and then in half again to make 1/4
In a large skillet over med-low heat fry bacon until crisp. Remove bacon from pan to a paper towel lined plate to drain. Drain all but 1 tbl bacon grease into a small bowl, do not toss will use more later.
Place pan back on the heat add the Brussels sprouts and the salt. Saute for 20-30 min stirring frequently and adding about 1tbl of bacon grease each time the pan becomes "dry". The Brussels sprouts are done when they are dark brown but not burnt. Remove from heat and add the bacon back to the pan and a little bit of pepper, toss lightly then serve.

In a pinch I have used frozen Brussels sprouts thawed and drained on paper towels for 15 min. It is not as good so try try to use fresh!

Artichoke Cheese Bread

I was inspired by another recipe that called for olives instead of artichoke but we are not olive fans in this house except EVOO :) I did not have the right amount of the cheese called for in the original recipe so I came up with a good mix of what I had on hand. Enjoy, feel free to change it up please share any successes

14.5 oz can Artichoke pieces drained
2 green onions
1 stick butter
1/2 c mayonnaise ( not the MW stuff from Kraft)
6oz monterey jack grated
6oz mozzarella grated
2 oz Parmesan grated
1 roasted red bell pepper in oil diced (optional)
1 loaf crusty French or Italian bread unsliced.

Pre-Heat oven 325
In a large bowl blend the butter and mayo for 2-3 min until almost fluffy. On a cutting board place the artichokes and give a rough chop add them to the bowl. Place green onions on the cutting board slice thin and then give a little cross action chop add to the bowl. Add all the cheese and the bell pepper if using mix together well. Slice the bread in half length wise spread the cheese artichoke mixture in an even layer on each half. Place bread on a sheet try and put in the oven. Bake 20-25 min until the cheese is thoroughly melted and beginning to turn light brown and bubbly. Remove from oven cut into diagonal slices and serve immediately.

ps. You could also use this as a dip with pita chips, pretzels or some other tasty vessel. :) After making the cheese mixture spread into a pie pan or other shallow oven proof dish bake until golden and bubbly.